Join us for a virtual lecture with author and historian John V. Quarstein when he presents on the only two Confederate ironclads to be put to the open sea and engage superior elements of a blockading fleet. Viewers are welcome to send Quarstein any comments or questions during the presentation, and he will answer following his talk.
About this presentation:
The ironclads CSS Palmetto State and CSS Chicora were built in 1862 in Charleston, South Carolina, to help defend the harbor from Union assault. The army commander of the defenses of South Carolina and Georgia, General Pierre Gustave Toutant (P.G.T.) Beauregard, pushed the Confederate navy to attempt to break the federal blockade. On the early misty morning of January 31, 1863, the two ironclads attacked the Union fleet. Palmetto State was able to damage two blockaders, USS Mercedita and Keystone State. The Confederate ironclads returned to Charleston on the next tide. Beauregard proclaimed that the blockade had been broken; however, the Union ships came back on station and Charleston’s value as a blockade runner’s haven continued to diminish.
Image credit: Confederate ironclads Chicora and Palmetto State. Nineteenth-century photograph of painting by Conrad Wise Chapman. Courtesy of Naval History and Heritage Command # NH 55237.