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Wyalusing (1864-1867)

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USS Wyalusing, a 974-ton Sassacus class "Double-Ender" side-wheel steam gunboat, was built at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Commissioned in February 1864, she joined the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron and was soon assigned to the North Carolina Sounds. On 5 May 1864, she participated in a battle with the Confederate ironclad CSS Albemarle. Later in that month, five of Wyalusing's sailors attempted to sink Albemarle with a swimmer-delivered mine. Though this attack failed, all five men were awarded the Medal of Honor for their heroic effort.

On 31 October 1864, following Albemarle's destruction, Wyalusing took part in the capture of Plymouth, N.C. She also participated in expeditions up the Roanoke River in December. Remaining in the North Carolina Sounds area until after the end of the Civil War, Wyalusing was decommissioned in June 1865. She was sold in October 1867.

This page features the only views we have of USS Wyalusing.

If you want higher resolution reproductions than the digital images presented here, see: "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."

Photo #: NH 1673

"Wood versus Iron"


19th Century photograph of an artwork by Acting Second Engineer Alexander C. Stuart, USN, 1864.
It shows CSS Albemarle engaging several Federal gunboats on Albemarle Sound, North Carolina, on 5 May 1864. USS Sassacus is in left center, ramming the Confederate ironclad. Other U.S. Navy ships seen are (from left): Commodore Hull, Wyalusing and Mattabesett. The Confederate transport Bombshell, captured during the action, is in the right background.
Albemarle was not significantly damaged during this action, which left Sassacus disabled by a hit in one of her boilers.

Collection of Surgeon H.P. Babcock, presented by George R. Babcock, 1938.



Photo #: NH 58943

"Capture of Plymouth, N.C. Oct. 1864"


19th Century photograph of a painting by Acting Second Engineer Alexander C. Stuart, USN, 1864.
It depicts USS Commodore Hull (at left) leading the "Double-Ender" gunboats Tacony, Shamrock, Otsego and Wyalusing in engaging Confederate batteries at Plymouth, North Carolina, on 31 October 1864. Small vessels lashed to the gunboats' unengaged sides include USS Whitehead (beside Tacony), USS Bazely (beside Shamrock) and Belle (beside Otsego).

Collection of Surgeon H.P. Babcock, USN. Donated by his son, George R. Babcock, 1939.



Photo #: NH 51794

"'Wyalusing' at Rainbow Bluff, N.C."

"Sinking of the 'Otsego' and blowing up of the 'Bazeley.'"

Phototype by F. Gutekunst, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, circa the later 19th Century.
This print depicts the U.S. Navy tug Bazely striking a mine while going to the assistance of USS Otsego, near Jamestown, North Carolina, on the Roanoke River, 9 December 1864. Otsego, which had just been sunk by other mines, is in the left center background. USS Wyalusing is in the foreground, providing covering fire as boats drag for mines nearby.



The following photograph shows a ship that may be USS Wyalusing:

Photo #: NH 43866

U.S. Navy Sassacus Class "Double-Ender" Gunboat


Photographed during or soon after the end of the Civil War, circa 1864-65.
Identification Notes: (1) Early catalog destriptions of this photograph mention a letter "W" on the bow of one of this ship's boats. If that is actually the case, the gunboat would be Wyalusing, Wateree or Winooski.
(2) The oval outline on the photograph's mat is similar to that used by photographer C.W. Yates, of Wilmington, N.C., in Photo # NH 51190. Of the three "W"-named ships, only Wyalusing was employed in the North Carolina area, so it is possible that she is seen in this photograph.



If you want higher resolution reproductions than the digital images presented here, see: "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."

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