The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Detroit Free Press (Detroit, MI), 5 Feb 1862

Full Text

from the N. Y. Evening Post

This battery was launched at Gun Point, Long Island, last week. It is sharp at both ends, and consists of a lower and upper hull; the sides of the former incling at an angle of fifty-one degrees, and coming to a point at each end at an angle of eighty-one degrees. The lower hull is iron-plated. The upper section is five feet high, with perpendicular sides, and the same sharp ends, and is forty-one feet and four inches wide, jutting over the lower hull three feet and seven inches on each side. The sides of this upper section are a little over three feet in thickness. First, there is an inner guard of inch-thick iron, and upon this is a section of white oak lumber thirty inches thick, and covered with an armor six inches thick, formed of six one-inch iron plates lapped and firmly riveted together.

The deck on top of the battery is even with the top of the hull, and is covered with two thicknesses of inch plate-iron, fastened to eight-inch oak plank and ten inch oak timber, but twenty-six inches apart. There is no railing or other obstruction on top of the battery except a round tower or turret, twenty feet in diameter and nine feet high, and eight inches thick, made of plate-iron. The turret has two port-holes, each two feet in diameter, for two eleven inch columbiads*, and also is pierced for musketry. The turret is of immense weight, but made to revolve by machinery from below, so as to bring the guns in any desired range, and to remove the ports from the enemy's guns while loading. To support, protect and give efficiency to this turret is the whole object of the battery, although its immense weight and power would sink any vessel with which it should come in contact.

The battery is steered from the front, the wheel-house standing before the turret. The wheel-house is strongly built of iron, and can be lowered into the hold like a bail of dry-goods. When lowered, the top, which is bomb-proof, is level with and forms a part of the deck. The joints are water-tight. The house will be pierced for sharp-shooters.

The ends of the upper vessel projecting over the hull, fore and aft, serve as a protection to the propeller, rudder and anchor. The propeller is of course at the stern, and the equipoise** rudder behind that, and they are so protected by the upper vessel that they cannot be struck by a ball. The anchor is in front, and is short but very heavy. It is hoisted by a chain running into the hold, up into a place fitted for it, outside the lower hull, but within the impregnable walls of the upper hull

Media Type:
Item Type:
* Two 11-inch Dahlgren guns were installed. **equipoise = counterbalanced, i.e. the rudder had a vane both foreward and aft of a central axle.
Date of Original:
5 Feb 1862
Local identifier:
Language of Item:
Dave Swayze
Copyright Statement:
Public domain: Copyright has expired according to the applicable Canadian or American laws. No restrictions on use.
Maritime History of the Great Lakes
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Detroit Free Press (Detroit, MI), 5 Feb 1862