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Photo # NH 66993:  Steamship Mount Savage.  Artwork by Erik Heyl

Online Library of Selected Images:

Steamship Mount Savage (1853-1868).
Served as USS Memphis in 1858-1859 and as USS Mystic in 1859-1865.
Was also named Memphis in 1857-1859 and General Custer in 1865-1868

Mount Savage, a 452-ton (burden) screw steamship, was built in 1853 at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She was renamed Memphis in 1857. Chartered by the Navy in September 1858, she served as USS Memphis during the Paraguay expedition of late 1858 and early 1859. The steamer was purchased by the Navy in May 1859 and renamed Mystic a few weeks later. In June and July 1860, while operating off Africa, she captured two slave ships.

During the first part of the Civil War Mystic served in the blockade of the Confederacy's Atlantic Coast. She assisted in the capture or destruction of four blockade runners off North Carolina in June-September 1862, among them the steamers Emma and Sunbeam. While in the process of taking the latter, on 28 September, she was damaged in collision with USS State of Georgia. Mystic was employed in the Chesapeake Bay region from late 1862 until the war's end. In May 1863 she supported the Army during an expedition up the York River and in September of that year seized a sailing vessel off Yorktown. USS Mystic was sold to private owners in June 1865. Renamed General Custer, she disappeared from merchant vessel registers in 1868.

This page features our the only view we have related to the steamship Mount Savage (1853-1868), which was USS Mystic in 1859-1865.

If you want higher resolution reproductions than the digital images presented here, see: "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."

Click on the small photograph to prompt a larger view of the same image.

Photo #: NH 66993

Steamship Mount Savage

Watercolor by Erik Heyl, prepared for use in his book "Early American Steamers", Volume III.
This steamer was chartered by the Navy in 1858 for the Paraguay expedition, purchased in 1859 and served as USS Mystic until sold in June 1865. She was the civilian steamer General Custer in 1865-1868.

Courtesy of Erik Heyl.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 63KB; 740 x 430 pixels


Additional Image: The Mariners Museum, of Newport News, Virginia, holts an artwork depicting USS Mystic off Fort Sumter, Charleston, South Carolina, during the Civil War. This image, relatively primitive in style, shows the ship from off her port side with sails furled, smoke issuing from her funnel and gun ports open. Mariners Museum photo number is QW-733.
For more information on this artwork, the availability of reproductions and usage rights, contact the Mariners Museum. That institution's address can be readily found by using standard Internet search engines.

If you want higher resolution reproductions than the digital images presented here, see: "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."

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Page made 9 November 2003