USS BlackHawk

USS BlackHawk

Union Tinclad

Laid down: New Albany, Indiana, in 1857 as the civilian steamboat New Uncle Sam
Commissioned: December 1862
Fate: Salvaged and sold in 1867

General Characteristics
Area of Operation: Mississippi Squadron flagship
Displacement: 902 tons
Length: 260 feet (79 m)
Beam: 45 feet 6 inches (13.87 m)
Draft: Depth of hold 8′
Propulsion: steam engine; side wheel-propelled
four 32-pounder smoothbores
two 30-pounder rifled guns
one 12-pounder rifled gun
one 12-pounder smoothbore


USS Black Hawk (1848) was a large steamer purchased by the Union Navy during the American Civil War. She was assigned by the Union Navy to gunship duty in the waterways of the rebellious Confederate States of America.

Black Hawk, a side-wheel river steamer, was built in 1848 as Uncle Sam at New Albany, Indiana; purchased by the Navy at Cairo, Illinois, 24 November 1862 as New Uncle Sam; commissioned 6 December 1862, Lieutenant Commander K. R. Breese in command; and renamed Black Hawk 13 December 1862.

During most of her service Black Hawk served as flagship for Rear Admirals David Dixon Porter and Samuel Phillips Lee, successive commanders of the Mississippi Squadron.

She participated in the following operations:
Vicksburg, Mississippi (December 1862)
capture of Fort Hindman, Arkansas (11 January 1863)
attack on Haines Bluff, Mississippi (29 April-2 May)
siege of Vicksburg (19 May-4 July)
Red river Expedition (12 March-29 May 1864)
Subsequent patrols and sinking

USS Black Hawk on fire off Cairo.Thereafter she patrolled in the Mississippi River and its tributaries. On 22 April 1865 she accidentally burned and sank, three miles above Cairo, Illinois. Her wreck was raised and sold at St. Louis, Missouri, in April 1867.

List of Commanders/Crew
Lieutenant Commander K. R. Breese

Painting Information

Books/Articles and other resources

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