Today in History:

Sciota (1861-1865)

USS Sciota, a 691-ton Unadilla class screw steam gunboat built at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was commissioned in December 1861. She joined the Gulf Blockading Squadron in January 1862 and soon captured a sailing blockade runner off the Louisiana coast. In April, Sciota took part in the successful campaign to fight past the Confederate forts on the lower Mississippi River and capture New Orleans. With that goal achieved, she moved further up the river, bombarding Grand Gulf and steaming past the Vicksburg batteries in June. Later in the summer of 1862, Sciota returned down the river, where she operated off Donaldsonville, Louisiana, in October.

In January 1863, Sciota was sent to reinforce the blockade of Galveston, Texas and participated in a bombardment of that city. She was sunk in a collision with USS Antona in the Mississippi on 14 July 1863, but was repaired and returned to service off Texas. From late 1863 through 1864, she was active in raids and blockade enforcement, capturing another three sailing vessels. She went to Mobile Bay, Alabama, in January 1865. On 14 April, USS Sciota struck a mine in Mobile Bay and sank. After being raised, she was sold at New York in October 1865. She had subsequent employment as a merchant ship and as a Chilean warship.

This page features our only views related to USS Sciota (1861-1865).

Photo #: NH 59367

"Our New Gun-boats"

Engraving published in "Harper's Weekly", July-December 1861 volume.
It depicts ten of the "90-Day Gunboats" constructed for the U.S. Navy in 1861-62.
Ships, as identified below the image bottom, are (from left, all USS): Chippewa, Sciota, Itasca, Winona, Huron, Ottawa, Pembina, Seneca, Unadilla and Sagamore.

Photo #: NH 42244

"Passage of Forts Jackson and St. Philip, April 24, 1862. Order of Attack."

Chart showing the positions of U.S. Navy ships during the action (with individual ships identified, with their commanders), and of Confederate defenses ashore and afloat.

Online Image: 208KB; 795 x 1225 pixels