Civil War Brown Water Navies

The Civil War in NE North Carolina

All Blog Posts (51)

Good news on the Civil War Living History Day front

John V. Quarstein, author of "CSS Virginia: Mistress of Hampton Roads" and "The Monitor Boys" and producer of Civil War documentaries for WHRO, will be one of the keynote speakers for this year's event. He will be talking about the North Carolina Squadron and its destruction at the battle of Elizabeth City.

Lee Oxford will also be speaking. His topic will be the capture of the Fanny and the Chicamacomico Races. One of his ancestors was captured aboard the Fanny.

Added by Bruce Long on October 29, 2011 at 11:44am — No Comments

In search of the CSS Sea Bird

Barry Cullens and I have been discussing a renewal of the search for the CSS Sea Bird. Barry has done sonar scans of the Pasquotank River in the past that turned up 6 likely locations. I located some information this past summer that helps narrow things down even further.

I wasn't looking for Sea Bird information at the time. I was looking for signal flags. Philip Madre, finder of the CSS Appomattox, was having a painting made of the Appomattox escaping up the river towards the…


Added by Bruce Long on October 19, 2011 at 7:54pm — No Comments

Looks like we're too late on the CSS Forrest

The construction company building the replacement bridge over the Pasquotank will be building a work bridge parallel to the current structure, right over the probable resting place of the CSS Forrest, sometime this week. I couldn't find a diver to see if there was anything left of her. Bummer.

Added by Bruce Long on October 18, 2011 at 8:30pm — No Comments

It's a sad day.

I have evidence that part of the CSS Forrest may still be intact near near the bridge over the Pasquotank River in Elizabeth City and can't find a diver interested in the project. I've been trying to get someone to dive on the likely location of the CSS Sea Bird for two years without success. With hits on the magnetometer, a definite wreck showing up on the side-scan sonar, and some historical evidence that this is the likely spot, you would think someone would jump on the project. No, everyone… Continue

Added by Bruce Long on September 11, 2011 at 8:04am — 2 Comments

CSS Forrest boiler found after 148 years.

Chris Meekins, sitting at his desk at the state archives, found the boiler of the CSS Forrest yesterday. He was combing through old issues of Pailman John's North Carolinian newspaper and found an article about a boiler being discovered about 50 yards from the shore off Lawrence and Son's Shipyard in Elizabeth City. John Fair of Portsmouth was diving to recover rollers and chains that had rolled off the end of the marine railway for the shipyard owners when he came across a large boiler.…


Added by Bruce Long on April 20, 2011 at 3:48pm — No Comments

Plymouth Living History Weekend 2011


Plymouth will be celebrating their annual Living History Weekend on April 29th - May 1st. Check out for more details. Here are a few photos from last year's event:



Added by Bruce Long on April 1, 2011 at 7:30pm — No Comments

Charles McDonald's NC Squadron officers and men photo album

Photos located by Charles McDonald are featured in the new North Carolina Squadron album. Enjoy!

Added by Bruce Long on September 27, 2010 at 8:24pm — No Comments

New additions to the blog posts and web sites

Two new entries have been added to my Links section. One is for the Civil War Navy Sesquicentennial Committee's blog page at . The other is for the Hatteras Sesquicentennial Committee's web site . Does anyone else have plans for the sesquicentennial events in the local area? Charlotte Patterson is interested in orienting this… Continue

Added by Bruce Long on September 27, 2010 at 7:30pm — No Comments

Expanding the photo album section

Andrew Duppstadt has uploaded photos of the CSS Neuse remains. I've added albums of USS Commodore Perry, USS Commodore Barney, USS Morse, USS Hunchback, USS Lockwood, USS Miami, USS Ceres, USS Louisiana, USS Shawsheen, and USS Putnam photos and drawings. More Union flotilla drawings and photos will follow.

Photos of officers have been added to the albums for the various ships.

Once I finish uploading the Union flotilla, I'll upload the few drawings of the North Carolina…


Added by Bruce Long on September 24, 2010 at 9:00pm — No Comments

How many can you identify?

At the bottom of the page is a picture that appeared in Harper's Weekly showing the Union flotilla at anchor in the Pasquotank River sometime within a couple of days of the battle. I consider it to be fairly accurate, as they had a sketch artist traveling with the Burnside Expedition. The three-masted USS Louisiana in the forground is a gimme. How many do you think you can identify?…


Added by Bruce Long on August 1, 2010 at 11:00pm — No Comments

Welcome to my Brownwater Navy Civil War site.

I plan to post photos of the various ships that cruised the waters of northeastern North Carolina and southeastern Virginia during the Civil War, along with discussions on why I have identified them as I have. Often the same photo will be identified by several different names in the collections of the Library of Congress, National Archives, and the USAMHI Mass-Mollus collection at Carlisle Barracks. I've seen two obviously different ships identified as being the same ship (within the same… Continue

Added by Bruce Long on July 30, 2010 at 12:30pm — No Comments

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