Union Tinclads


“Tinclad” was a popular name for a member of a heterogenous group of seventy-six gunboats converted from small river steamers for use on the Mississippi and its smaller tributaries. They were often referred to in official Navy correspondence by the term “light-drafts.” (“Tinclad” is a misnomer. They weren’t clad with tin; in fact, several had no metal armor at all, relying on wooden bulwarks for protection.)

Once the initial river battles had been fought in the first half of 1862 that gained the Union the control of the Ohio, Tennesee, Cumberland, and upper Mississippi, it became apparent that the existing naval force of nine ironclads and three wooden gunboats was insufficient to patrol those rivers. The relatively heavy ironclads were very slow going upstream, and there was great need for their presence near Vicksburg, leaving the three “timberclads” Lexington, Tyler, and Conestoga stretched too thin to adequately cover the rivers.

List of Union Tinclads:
USS BlackHawk (no assigned number)
USS Ouachita (no assigned number)
USS Glide (no assigned number)
USS Rattler (tinclad #1)
USS Tempest (tinclad #1)
USS Marmora (tinclad #2)
USS Romeo (tinclad #3)
USS Juliet (tinclad #4)
USS Petrel (tinclad #5)
USS Cricket (tinclad #6)
USS New Era (tinclad #7)
USS Signal (tinclad #8)
USS Grossbreak (tinclad #8)
USS Forest Rose (tinclad #9)
USS Linden (tinclad #10)
USS Ibex (tinclad #10)
USS Prairie Bird (tinclad #11)
USS Curlew (tinclad #12)
USS Fort Hindman (tinclad #13)
USS Kenwood (tinclad #14)
USS Hastings (tinclad #15)
USS Little Rebel (tinclad #16)
USS Fairplay (tinclad #17)
USS Brilliant (tinclad #18)
USS St. Clair (tinclad #19)
USS General Pillow (tinclad #20)
USS Alfred Robb (tinclad #21)
USS Springfield (tinclad #22)
USS Silver Lake (tinclad #23)
USS Champion (tinclad #24)
USS Covington (tinclad #25)
USS Colossus (tinclad #25)
USS Queeen City (tinclad #26)
USS Mist (tinclad #26)
USS Argosy (tinclad #27)
USS Silver Cloud (tinclad #28)
USS Tawah (tinclad #29)
USS Collier (tinclad #29)
USS Fawn (tinclad #30)
USS Paw Paw (tinclad #31)
USS Key West (tinclad #32)
USS Abeona (tinclad #32)
USS Victory (tinclad #33)
USS Moose (tinclad #34)
USS Reindeer (tinclad #35)
USS Peosta (tinclad #36)
USS Naumkeag (tinclad #37)
USS Exchange (tinclad #38)
USS Tensas (tinclad #39)
USS Alexandria (tinclad #40)
USS Nyanza (tinclad #41)
USS Stockdale (tinclad #42)
USS Glide(2) (tinclad #43)
USS Meteor (tinclad #44)
USS Wave (tinclad #45)
USS Tallahatchie (tinclad #46)
USS Elk (tinclad #47)
USS Rodolph (tinclad #48)
USS Carrabasset (tinclad #49)
USS Gazelle (tinclad #50)
USS Fairy (tinclad #51)
USS Elfin (tinclad #52)
USS Oriole (tinclad #52)
USS Naiad (tinclad #53)
USS Nymph (tinclad #54)
USS Undine (tinclad #55)
USS Kate (tinclad #55)
USS Siren (tinclad #56)
USS Peri (tinclad #57)
USS Huntress (tinclad #58)
USS Sibyl (tinclad #59)
USS Gamage (tinclad #60)
USS General Sherman (tinclad #60)
USS General Thomas (tinclad #61)
USS General Grant (tinclad #62)
USS General Burnside (tinclad #63)

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