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<p>CSS Virginia attacks USS Cumberland</p>

Heroism and Heartache: The Battle of Hampton Roads


On March 8, 1862, the Battle of Hampton Roads commenced when the Confederate ironclad CSS Virginia made its way into the Roads, attacking the wooden Union warships on blockade duty. Around 2 P.M. on March 8, CSS Virginia traded shots with USS Congress and then steamed for USS Cumberland. Then, at 3:05 P.M., Virginia used its iron ram to smash into the wooden Cumberland, tearing a massive hole in the starboard bow. USS Cumberland sank within the hour, taking 123 Sailors with the ship.


The battle continued with the Confederates burning the wooden ship USS Congress and USS Minnesota grounding upon a shoal. The next day, March 9, 1862, the Union ironclad USS Monitor arrived and the first battle between ironclad ships commenced. Learn more about this powerful story by visiting our new exhibit. In this exhibit, we focus on the sacrifice of USS Cumberland's crew and the difference their fight made to the battle.


You can view the exhibit in person at our museum or take a 3D virtual tour by clicking this link