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USS Charleston (C-2)

Please see below for item level images and donated collections containing photographs of USS Charleston (C-2)

USS Charleston (C-2), a protected cruiser, was launched 19 July 1888 by Union Iron Works, San Francisco, Calif; sponsored by Mrs. A. S. Smith; and commissioned 26 December 1889, Captain G. C. Remey in command.

USS Charleston (C-2) cleared Mare Island Navy Yard 10 April 1890 to join the Pacific Squadron as flagship, cruising in the eastern Pacific. Between 19 August and 31 December 1891, USS Charleston (C-2) cruised in the Far East as flagship of the Asiatic Squadron, rejoining the Pacific Squadron in 1892 until 7 October, when she departed for the east coast, calling at a number of South American ports en route. USS Charleston (C-2) arrived in Hampton Roads, Va., 23 February 1893. From here she sailed with other American and foreign ships to the International Naval Review conducted at New York City 26 April 1893 as part of the Columbian Exposition.

Upon the outbreak of the Spanish-American War, USS Charleston (C-2) was quickly made ready for service, and was recommissioned 5 May 1898. Sixteen days later she sailed for Honolulu, where she was joined by three chartered steamers transporting troops. USS Charleston (C-2) was sent to raise the American flag over Guam, then a Spanish possession. With the Spanish governor and the island's garrison of 59 as prisoners in one of the transports, USS Charleston (C-2) then sailed to join Admiral Dewey's fleet in Manila Bay.

She arrived Manila 30 June 1898 to reinforce the-victors of the previous month's great naval battle in their close blockade of the Bay. USS Charleston (C-2) joined in the final bombardment of 13 August, which brought about the surrender of the city of Manila. She remained in the Philippines through 1898 and 1899, bombarding insurgent positions to aid Army forces advancing ashore, and taking part in the naval expedition which captured Subic Bay in September 1899. USS Charleston (C-2) grounded on an uncharted reef near Camiguin Island north of Luzon on 2 November. Wrecked beyond salvage, she was abandoned by all her crew, who made camp on a nearby island, later moving on to Camiguin while the ship's sailing launch was sent for help. On 12 November, USS Helena arrived to rescue the shipwrecked men.

For a complete history of USS Charleston (C-2) please see its DANFS page.