USS Huntress (1862)

Union Navy JackUnited States
Laid down: date unknown
Launched: 1862
Acquired: May 1864
Commissioned: 10 June 1864
Decommissioned: 10 August 1865
Struck: 1865 (est.)
Fate: sold, 17 August 1865
General characteristics
Displacement: 211 tons
Length: 131' 8"
Beam: 31' 3"
Draught: depth of hold 4' 2"
Speed: 5 knots
Complement: not known

USS Huntress (1862) was a steamer acquired by the Union Navy during the American Civil War. She was placed into service as a gunboat assigned to support the Union Navy during the naval blockade of ports and rivers of the Confederate States of America.

Constructed in New Albany, Indiana in 1862[]

Huntress, a stern-wheel steamer, was built in 1862 in New Albany, Indiana. She was purchased by the Navy at Louisville, Kentucky, in May 1864, taken to Cincinnati, Ohio, for outfitting and reported to the 8th District, Mississippi Squadron for duty 10 June 1864, Acting Master J. S. Dennis in command.

Assigned to the Mississippi River squadron[]

Assigned to the area of the Mississippi River between Memphis, Tennessee, and Columbus, Kentucky, Huntress engaged in the key role of keeping the vital river lines of supply open, stopping illegal trade in cotton along the riverbank and suppressing bands of guerrillas who attacked transports and gunboats.

Maintaining Union control of the Mississippi[]

After repairs at Mound City, Illinois, November 1864, she returned to active patrolling on the stretch of river between Mound City and Memphis. Huntress remained on that duty between March and July 1865, maintaining Union control of the Mississippi River during the waning moments of the Civil War.

Post-war decommissioning, sale, and subsequent career[]

In July, she returned to Mound City and, after brief service transporting ordnance at the Naval Base, decommissioned 10 August 1865. She was sold 7 days later to Samuel Black. Redocumented Huntress 2 October, she resumed her career as a river steamer but was lost after stranding near Alexandria, Louisiana, 30 December 1865.[1]


  1. ^ Gaines, W. Craig, Encyclopedia of Civil War Shipwrecks, Louisiana State University Press, 2008, ISBN 978-0-8071-3274-6, p. 66.