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Palmetto State

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CSS Palmetto State, a Richmond class ironclad ram built at Charleston, South Carolina, was commissioned in September 1862. On 31 January 1863, in one of the Confederate Navy's few successful efforts against Union blockading forces, she joined her sister ship Chicora in an attack that disabled USS Keystone State and USS Mercedita. Though the blockade was not broken, it was clearly endangered by the two Confederate ironclads, neither of which was much injured in the action.

When U.S. Navy ironclads attacked Fort Sumter on 7 April 1863, and when some of Charleston's defending batteries had to be evacuated on 6-7 September of that year, Palmetto State assisted in the successful Confederate operations. For most of the rest of the Civil War, she remained active in the Charleston vicinity. CSS Palmetto State was destroyed on 18 February 1865, when the city was evacuated.

This page features all our views of CSS Palmetto State.

Photo #: NH 75619

CSS Palmetto State
(1862-1865)

Wash drawing by R.G. Skerrett, 1901, depicting the ship in Charleston harbor, South Carolina.

Courtesy of the U.S. Navy Art Collection, Washington, D.C.



Photo #: NH 93044-KN (Color)

CSS Palmetto State (1862-1865)

Watercolor by Charles C. Cawson, circa 1862, featuring the names of the ship's officers. Their names are given in Photo # NH 93044-KN ... (complete caption).

Courtesy of the Navy Art Collection, Washington, DC.



Photo #: NH 57837

CSS Palmetto State
(1862-1865)

Wash drawing by Clary Ray, signed and dated 23 April 1897.

Courtesy of the U.S. Navy Art Collection, Washington, D.C.



Photo #: NH 55237

Confederate ironclads Chicora and Palmetto State


Nineteenth-Century photograph of a painting by Conrad Wise Chapman, depicting the ships in Charleston harbor, South Carolina, during the Civil War.
Note the spar torpedo fitted to the ironclad in the right center.

The original painting is in the Confederate Museum, Richmond, Virginia.



Photo #: NH 59303

"The Charleston Iron-Clad Fleet"


Line engraving, based on a sketch by A.P. Palmer, 21st South Carolina Volunteers, published in "Harper's Weekly", January-June 1863, page 76, depicting (rather inaccurately) CSS Chicora and CSS Palmetto State in Charleston harbor, South Carolina.



Photo #: NH 59304

"The Rebel Rams engaging our Blockading Fleet off Charleston, South Carolina, January 31, 1863"


Line engraving published in "Harper's Weekly", January-June 1863, page 117, depicting CSS Chicora and CSS Palmetto State attacking USS Mercedita, with USS Keystone State at right.



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