Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Mendota I (SwGbt)

(SwGbt: dp. 974; l. 205'; b. 35'; dr. 8'9"; s. 11 k.; a. 2 100‑pdr., 4 9" S. B., 2 24‑pdr., 2 20‑pdr.; cl. Sassacus)

A lake in Wisconsin. Madison, the State capital, is located on Mendota's southern shore.


Mendota, a sidewheel gunboat, was launched 13 January 1863 by F. Z. Tucker, Brooklyn, N.Y.; acquired by the Navy 1 February 1864; and commissioned 2 May 1864, Comdr. E. T. Nichols in command.

From the day of her commissioning in 1864, Mendota was assigned to the James River (Va.) Division, North Atlantic Blockading Squadron. The first 10 months she served as a picket ship near Four Mile Creek. Her guns were used to prevent the establishment of Confederate batteries or entrenchments which would threaten river communications or imperil a small Union Army base camp. Action on 28 July was particularly intense. During her last 2 months of service she directed ship movements at Hampton Roads and also at the mouth of the Delaware River.

After the war Mendota decommissioned 12 May 1865 and was laid up at League Island, Philadelphia, until sold 7 December 1867.

Published: Fri Aug 07 09:24:51 EDT 2015