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Civil War Lectures

Keep company with John Quarstein, renowned historian and director emeritus of the USS Monitor Center, as he presents on the intriguing maritime history of the Civil War. This long-running series explores the ships, personalities, technologies, and battles that would shape our nation for the next 150 years.

NEW in 2022!

This lecture series is being offered in person in the Museum’s McMullen classroom and livestreamed simultaneously. Advance registration is required.

Advance registration is required whether attending the lecture in person or online.
Attending in person?
This program is free with $1 admission, and free for Mariners’ Museum Members. Seating is limited to 12, and chairs will be spaced six feet apart for social distancing in compliance with current CDC safety protocols for COVID-19.
 
Watching remotely?
This program is free to watch online, and you may register below.

Got ideas for a lecture topic or want to share comments or questions? Email us at [email protected].

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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John Quarstein

John V. Quarstein, director emeritus of the USS Monitor Center


UPCOMING LECTURES:


 


Battle of Trent’s Reach

Friday, January 28, 2022 • 12 PM (ET)

IN PERSON AND LIVESTREAMED

Advance registration is required whether attending the lecture in person or online.

About the lecture:
The Confederate James River Squadron consisted of three ironclads – CSS Fredericksburg, CSS Richmond, and CSS Virginia II – commanded by Flag Officer John K. Mitchell. On January 23, 1865, the squadron was sent to attack the huge Union supply base at City Point, Virginia. The Confederates dueled with the Federal Fort Brady near Chaffin’s Bluff; however, they could not reach their objective. The Confederate fleet was then destroyed on April 3, 1865, as the Confederacy collapsed. Trent’s Reach was the last major naval engagement of the Civil War.

Seating is limited to 12 in person, and chairs will be spaced six feet apart for social distancing in compliance with current CDC safety protocols for COVID-19.
Image credit: A sketch by Alfred Waud dated February 11, 1865, from Harper’s Illustrated showing the Confederate fleet breaking through the boom at Trent’s Reach. Courtesy of Library of Congress.

 


Pook’s Turtles: CITY-Class Ironclads

Friday, February 11, 2022 • 12 PM (ET)

IN PERSON AND LIVESTREAMED

Advance registration is required whether attending the lecture in person or online.

About the lecture:
When the Civil War began, St. Louis industrialist James B. Eads recognized the need to control the many rivers flowing north to south. Eads offered the US Navy one of his workboats; instead, he was referred to the US Army. Commander John Rodgers, USN, was assigned to work with Eads to construct gunboats on the Mississippi. The pair established design criteria for building casemate ironclads, including speed, draft, motive power, and armament. Naval architect Samuel Moore Pook was given this information, and he developed the City-class of ironclads. Because of their distinctive shape, these seven vessels were called “Pook Turtles.” Ironclads like the USS Cairo, USS Mound City, and USS Carondelet provided the Western Gunboat Flotilla the protection and armament necessary to take control of the Mississippi River and its many tributaries. These vessels ensured the preservation of the Union.

Seating is limited to 12 in person, and chairs will be spaced six feet apart for social distancing in compliance with current CDC safety protocols for COVID-19.

Image credit: Bombardment and Capture of Island Number Ten, 7 April 1862. Naval History and Heritage Command KN 96.


Pre-registration is required.
For additional assistance, questions or support, please contact us at: [email protected].

Can’t attend?
No problem! Many of our programs and lectures are uploaded to our YouTube Channel shortly afterwards.