The second Quinnebaug, a screw corvette built by the Philadelphia Navy Yard but occasionally listed as a rebuilt version of the first Quinnebaug, was launched 28 September 1875; and commissioned 2 October 1878, Comdr. Norman H. Farquhar in command.
Quinnebaug departed Philadelphia 17 October 1878 for fitting out at Norfolk. She got underway It January 1879 and reached Gibraltar 2 February to begin a decade of service on the European Station, interrupted only by a brief visit home in the summer of 1881. During this service she operated for the most part in the Mediterranean, steaming from the straits to the Levant and visiting numerous ports along both the European and African coasts of that ancient sea and center of culture. She also usually made an annual cruise along the Atlantic Coast of Europe visiting ports in Spain, Portual, France, England, Denmark and Germany.
Departing Gibraltar 9 May 1889, Quinnebaug returned to the New York Navy Yard 17 June 1889. She decommissioned there 3 July, was struck from the Navy List 21 November 1889 and was sold 25 March 1891.