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USS Louisville (1862-1865)

Please see below for item level images and donated collections containing photographs of USS Louisville (1862-1865)

USS Louisville (1862-1865), an ironclad centerwheel steamer, was built at St. Louis, Mo., by James B. Eads in 1861, under contract with the War Department; was accepted on 15 January 1862; and commissioned on 16 January 1862, Comdr. Benjamin M. Dove in command.

Part of the War Department's flotilla on the western rivers, USS Louisville (1862-1865) assisted the Army in the capture of Port Donelson on the Cumberland River, from 14 to 16 February 1862. From 1 to 5 March, she aided in the occupation of Columbus, Ky., known as the "Gibraltar of the West." In May, USS Louisville (1862-1865) was ordered to Fort Pillow and participated in the Battle of Memphis on 6 June. Commanded by Rear Adm. Charles H. Davis, her squadron captured and sank the Confederate Mississippi flotilla. On 15 June, she attacked the upper batteries at Vicksburg, before shifting efforts to the White River, departing Helena, Ark., on 5 August. Escorting USS Benton and USS Bragg to the mouth of the river, she met little resistance. On 1 October, she was transferred to the Navy.

USS Louisville (1862-1865) aided in the capture of Fort Hindman, Arkansas Post, from 4 to 11 January 1863, and formed part of the expedition through Steele's Bayou, 14 to 28 January. She was ordered to the Yazoo River on 31 January and moved to stop Confederate soldiers from felling trees across the bayou on 21 March. USS Louisville (1862-1865) then turned her attention to the batteries on the river, running past those at Vicksburg on 16 April, and engaging the lower ones on 29 April. 

From 12 March to 22 May 1864, USS Louisville (1862-1865) joined in the expedition up the Red River, La. On 2 June she engaged Confederate batteries seven miles below Columbia, Ark., silencing the guns. She landed Union troops at Sunnyside on 6 June. USS Louisville (1862-1865) continued service on the Mississippi until decommissioning on 21 July 1865. She was sold at public auction at Mound City on 29 November 1865.

For a complete history of USS Louisville (1862-1865) please see its DANFS page.