Today in History:

Tioga (1862-1867)

USS Tioga, a 1120-ton Genesee class "double-ender" side wheel steam gunboat built at the Boston Navy Yard, Massachusetts, was commissioned in late June 1862. During that summer, she operated on Virginia's James River covering the final phases of the Army's Peninsular Campaign. Following brief service on the Potomac River, in August 1862 Tioga was sent to the West Indies to guard against Confederate cruisers and blockade runners. Over the next year, she captured or helped take several of the latter, most of them sailing vessels.

Transferred to the East Gulf Blockading Squadron in September 1863, Tioga seized three additional sailing blockade runners. Ordered north in June 1864 to control an outbreak of yellow fever among her crew, the gunboat was decommissioned for overhaul. She reentered active service a year later for operations off the New England coast and in the Gulf of Mexico. USS Tioga went out of commission in May 1866 and was sold in October 1867.

This page features our only view of USS Tioga (1862-1867).

Photo #: NH 85666

USS Tioga (1862-1867)

View looking forward from atop her port paddle box, showing the gun crews at their posts. Taken at Bangor, Maine, during or shortly after the Civil War.
Note: large Parrott rifled gun on a slide-pivot mount forward; 32-Pounder smoothbore gun nearer the camera; African-American sailor in the 32-Pounder gun's crew; fire buckets, bearing the ship's name, hung around the capstan; shot rack on the hatch in lower right; sail rigged to the foremast by hoops; windsail ventilator rigged abaft the mast; boat davits and rigging for masts and the smokestack.

Courtesy of Lieutenant Colonel W.J. O'Brien.