CSS Colonel Lovell, a 521-ton side-wheel steamer, was
built at Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1845. Under the name Hercules,
she was taken over by the Confederacy at New Orleans in 1861,
converted to a "cottonclad" ram and renamed Colonel
Lovell. As part of the River Defense Fleet, she took part
in naval actions off Fort Pillow, Tennessee, on 10 May 1862, and
Memphis on 6 June. In the latter battle, Colonel Lovell
suffered engine failure and was rammed twice by Federal warships,
causing her to sink in deep water.
This page features our only views of CSS Colonel Lovell.
Photo #: NH 42755
"Battle of Fort Pillow, 3rd Position"
Engraving published in Rear Admiral Henry Walke's "Naval
Scenes and Reminiscences of the Civil War in the United States
..." (1877), depicting the action between the Confederate
River Defense Fleet and Federal ironclads near Fort Pillow, Tennessee,
10 May 1862.
Confederate ships, seen at left, include: Colonel Lovell,
General Beauregard, General M. Jeff Thompson, General
Bragg, General Sumter, Little Rebel and General
Earl van Dorn.
The Federal ironclads, in the center and right, are: Carondelet,
Cincinnati, Mound City, Benton, Saint
Louis, Cairo and Pittsburg. A tug is seen in
the right foreground.
Photo #: NH 42367
"The Total Annihilation of the Rebel Fleet by the Federal
Fleet under Commodore Davis."
"On the Morning of June 6th 1862, off Memphis, Ten."
Lithograph by Middleton, Strobridge & Co.
In the foreground, the print depicts the Confederate ships (from
left to right): General M. Jeff Thompson (shown sinking);
Little Rebel (shown burning); General Sterling Price;
General Beauregard (shown being rammed by the Ellet Ram
Monarch); General Bragg (shown aground) and Colonel
Lovell (shown sinking).
In the background are the Federal warships (from left to right):
Queen of the West; Cairo; Carondelet; Louisville;
Saint Louis; a tug; and Benton.
The city of Memphis is in the right distance, with a wharf boat
by the shore.
Courtesy of the Naval Historical Foundation.