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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
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Mohongo

 

The wife of Kihegashugah, an Osage chief, who accompanied her husband and four other Indians on a voyage to Paris, France, in 1827 in commemoration of a similar trip made by Kihegashugah’s, grandfather in the time of Louis XIV.

 

(SwGbt: t. 1,034; l. 255'; b. 35'; dr. 9'6"; s. 13 k.; cpl. 190; a. 2 100‑pdrs. R. r., 4 9" P. r., 2 20‑pdrs. D. r., 2 24‑pdrs. cl. Ashuelot)

 

Mohongo, an iron‑hulled, schooner‑rigged gunboat, was laid down at New York by Zeno Secor & Co., Jersey City, N.J., in 1863; launched 9 July 1864; and commissioned at New York Navy Yard 23 May 1865, Capt. J. W. A. Nicholson in command.

 

Assigned to the Pacific Squadron, Mohongo departed Brooklyn 29 May 1865 for the west coast of South America. Sailing via St. Thomas; Barbados; Natal, Bahia, and Rio de Janiero, Brazil; and Montevideo, Uruguay, making official protocol visits to those Caribbean and Latin American ports, the “double‑ender” steamed through the Straits of Magellan in a severe gale 9 October and arrived Valparaiso, Chile, the 29th. She remained there repairing her storm‑damaged pumps and boilers until standing out 27 April 1866 for Callao, Peru. Arriving 6 days later, the warship joined Rear Adm. George F. Pearson’s Pacific Squadron in the midst of a Spanish blockade during the Peruvian War with Spain over conditions of the treaty recognizing Peru’s independence. Mohongo remained at Callao with the rest of the squadron, protecting American lives and property from attack by either side until departing 21 May for a month’s cruise up the coast of South America to Guayaquil, Ecuador, on a protocol visit.

 

The warship arrived at the squadron’s Panama base at the end of June and on 6 August was ordered to Rear Adm. Henry K. Thatcher’s newly established North Pacific Squadron, originally part of the Pacific Squadron now divided in two because of the great area to be patrolled by American naval vessels. Departing Panama 20 November, the ship visited Acapulco, Mexico, from 30 November to 28 March 1867 and then sailed to Mare Island Navy Yard for a year‑long overhaul, completed 15 August 1868.

 

Mohongo stood out of San Francisco 26 April bound for Honolulu on an official diplomatic cruise to Hawaii. During the 7‑month visit, she received on board King Kamehameha V and Dowager Queen Emma, the American Charge d’Affairs Colonel Spaulding, U.S. Minister McCook, and other Island officials and court members in July and August, and then cruised the Hawaiian chain, making charts and patrolling into December. The gunboat departed Hawaii 17 December for La Paz, Lower California, on a protocol visit, receiving the Governor on board on the 24th, and then cruised off Lower Mexico for the rest of the year and into 1869, putting into San Francisco 4 March. Eight days later she sailed again to cruise the same station off the Mexican and Lower Californian coasts. On 19 May, she returned to San Francisco. After off‑loading ordnance and stores at Mare Island, her crew was transferred to sloop of war Mohican and Mohongo decommissioned 29 May. The gunboat was sold to H. Norton 17 November 1870.