The Civil War Connections Blog

Tag Archives: John Ericsson

Upon visiting the John Ericsson National Memorial

I made a brief visit to the John Ericsson National Memorial in Washington, DC recently.  If you haven’t been, I’ll warn you that it’s not the easiest memorial to visit as it sits in the median in West Potomac Park, near where  Independence Avenue, 23rd Street, and Ohio Drive, SW all come together.  Yes – it’s right […]

…the whole land resounds with ERICSSON!

From time to time we come across new…old poetry about the Monitor and Virginia.  Today, we found this. The entire poem is extremely long and deals with all of the events of 1862. But the piece about the Battle of Hampton Roads was particularly nice:   Excerpt from New Year’s Address of the Carriers of the Providence […]

Ironclad Legends

In early March of 1862, the ironclad ships of both the Confederacy and the Union finally encountered one another and engaged in a naval battle that would forever change naval technology. Even at the time, back in 1862, many people understood that this one encounter was a monumental event. Amazingly enough, one of the perks […]

10 Years Ago Today…

240 feet below the swells of the Atlantic Ocean, 16 miles off the coast of Cape Hatteras in an area known as the ‘Graveyard of the Atlantic,’ the wreck of the Civil War ironclad USS Monitor waited.  Buffeted by the clashing of the Gulf Stream and Labrador Current, she who had fought an epic battle […]

An Answer to “Stupidity” & “Captain Ericsson, I congratulate you…” (Scientific American, 3/29/1862)

Last week I posted about a Scientific American article that called out the US Navy and government for their “stupidity” in regards to not building enough ironclad warships.  Ironically, exactly one week later, in what would have been the very next issue of Scientific American there was an article published on a new ironclad ship […]

Monitor Log: 2 March 1862

March 2 found the Monitor still undergoing preparations at the New York Navy Yard (commonly known as the Brooklyn Navy Yard). The sea trails of a few days before had not gone extremely well – Paymaster William Keeler recalled that on February 27 the Monitor had careened “first to the New York side, then to the Brooklyn […]

All along the MONITOR Trail

Last week I traveled from the birthplace of the Monitor to the point of land closest to her final resting place, passing over the scene of her March 9 debut in the process. What struck me was this: her story is not for one place – it is a story that touches so many places, and […]

…she was launched successfully

When we last left John Worden, he had just taken command of a partially-built vessel that had no guns.  Each time guns designated for the Monitor would arrive, they would be commandeered by a vessel that was ready to fight, and so Worden waited.  By January 24, 1862, the guns were still not on board and Worden […]

…a severe monitor…

In 2001, US Navy divers and NOAA archaeologists recovered the USS Monitor‘s 20-ton steam engine. Attached to the face of the engine was this brass gauge. It is the engine register, and it consists of a round metal container which houses six numbered brass wheels that would rotate as the propeller shaft turned. The numbered […]

doing the math…

I have never been particularly good at math – but Commodore Joseph Smith apparently was. He had been counting to 100 since October 4, 1861, and by his calculations, January 12, 1862 would be the 100th day since the contract for Ericsson’s Battery had been signed.  Which, of course, meant that the strange little ironclad […]