The Maritime History of the Great Lakes
Watertown Daily Times (Watertown, NY), August 25, 1883

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The New Orleans.

The famous old vessel New Orleans, says the Chicago Tribune, is to be sold at auction, and a writer well posted on marine matters relates the following interesting narrative concerning her early history: Near the close of the war of 1812 the United States government began the construction of two three-decked men-of-war, one at (the other near to) Sackets Harbor, N.Y. The frigate at Sackets Harbor, more advanced than the other, received the name of New Orleans - a name sufficient to fire the popular heart in those days, because commemorating Gen. Jackson's magnificant victory of cotton-bale fame. The need of a frigate as a countermatch to the Lawrence was pressing, and the government was exerting extraordinary energy in construction and equipment, since no vessel sailing the stars and stripes could be transferred from the Atlantic to Ontario, the River St. Lawrence being fully in possession of the enemy, to say nothing of Lachine Rapids, etc. In six weeks from the time the first tree was felled, the New Orleans was sheathed, two decks in and the third partly laid. The vessel lacked lining up (inside ceiling) portions of bulwarks, hatch-covers, etc.; and when the order came to stop work because of the declaration of peace, it was thought it could have been launched in thirty days' more time. Illustrating the grim energy of our forefathers, let me say that all this boat's rigging was conveyed at great expense and difficulty from New York city via the Hudson and Mohawk Rivers to Utica, thence overland to Sackets Harbor. There were then no railroads, and the government road connecting Utica, and the then busy village of Sackets Harbor was a very rough and rude highway. The anchor chain of the New Orleans, weighing 8,000 pounds, was carried from Utica ninety-six miles, to the Harbor, on the shoulders of 300 men, who traced their way by means of blazed trees. After the cessation of the war, government ordered the boat housed to preserve it. A double-roofed building was accordingly erected over its 300 odd feet of length, which was blown down some three years ago. Since then the vessel has been the sport of storms, and presents a decidedly weather-beaten appearance. Many of its timbers have walked off in the shape of canes, and today it stands awaiting its final destruction at the fall of the auctioneer's hammer.

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August 25, 1883
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Richard Palmer
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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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Watertown Daily Times (Watertown, NY), August 25, 1883