Today in History:

General Lyon (1862-1865)

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USS General Lyon, a 390-ton side-wheel river steamer, was built in 1860 at New Albany, Indiana, as the civilian ship De Soto. After serving as the Confederate gunboat De Soto in 1861-62, she was captured by Federal forces at Island Number Ten on 7 April 1862. The U.S. Army employed her as a transport until the U.S. Navy acquired her in September 1862. Changing her name from De Soto to General Lyon in October 1862, the Navy's Mississippi Squadron used her as a ordnance, stores and dispatch vessel during the remainder of the Civil War. General Lyon was decommissioned and sold in August 1865. Renamed Alabama as a civilian steamer, she burned on 1 April 1867 at Grand View, Louisiana.

This page features our only views related to USS General Lyon.

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

Photo #: NH 53866

USS General Lyon (1862-1865)


View of the ship's upper deck, forward, during the Civil War, showing her smokestacks and a 12-pounder Dahlgren howitzer on an iron field carriage.
Note low wooden railing around the deck edge.



Photo #: NH 56178

Richard E. Birch, First Class Pilot, USN


Photo mounted on a Carte de Visite. He commanded USS General Lyon in 1863-65.



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

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