CSS Chameleon

CSS Chameleon


Builder: J. W. Dudgeon
Laid down:
Commissioned: July 20, 1864
Fate: Awarded to the United States Government

General Characteristics
Area of Operation:
Displacement: 700 tons
Length: 220 ft (67 m)
Beam: 24 ft (7.3 m)
Draft: 14 ft (4.3 m)
Propulsion: 2 – 100 h.p steam engines. 2 screws. Mast and sails
Speed: 15 knots
Complement: 120 officers and sailors
1 rifled 32 pounder forward
1 rifled 100 pounder amidship
1 heavy Parrot aft


The Olustee was renamed the CSS Chameleon with Lt. J. Wilkinson, CSN, commanding. The battery had been removed and she ran through the Union blockade on December 24, 1864 while the United States fleet was preoccupied with bombarding Fort Fisher. The Chameleon proceeded to Bermuda to obtain provisions for the Confederate army.

Wilkinson made two attempts to enter one of the southern ports, but finding it impossible, he took Chameleon to Liverpool, England, and turned her over to Comdr. J. D. Bullock, CSN, financial agent of the Confederate Navy Department.

On her arrival in England on April 9, 1865 the Chameleon was seized and sold by the British authorities and was about to enter the merchant service when the United States instituted suit for possession. She was awarded to the United States Government and handed over to the consul at Liverpool on April 26, 1866.

2.List of Commanders/Crew

3.Painting Information

4.Books/Articles and other resources

Back to Confederate Blockade Runners


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: