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CSS Savannah, was formerly the steamer Everglade, built in 1856 at New York City. She was purchased early in 1861 by the State of Georgia and converted into a gunboat for coast defense. With Georgia's admission to the Confederacy, Savannah, under Lieutenant John Newland Maffitt, CSN, was commissioned by the Confederate States Navy. She was attached to the squadron of Flag Officer Josiah Tattnall, CSN, charged with the naval defense of South Carolina and Georgia.

On November 5-6, 1861, Savannah, flying Tattnall's flag, in company with CSS Resolute, CSS Sampson, and CSS Lady Davis, offered harassing resistance to a much larger Union fleet, under Flag Officer Samuel Francis Du Pont, USN, preparing to attack Confederate strongholds at Port Royal Sound, S.C. On November 7, Savannah fired on the heavy Union ships as they bombarded Fort Walker and Fort Beauregard. Driven finally by the Federal gunboats into Skull Creek, Ga., Tattnall disembarked with a landing party in an abortive attempt to support the fort's garrison, and Savannah returned to Savannah, Georgia to repair damages.

Her name was changed to Oconee on April 28, 1863, and in June she was loaded with cotton and dispatched to England to pay for much-needed supplies. After some delay she escaped to sea only to founder on August 18 during bad weather. A boat with four officers and 11 men was captured 2 days later; the remainder of her crew escaped.



This article includes text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.



Launched: 1856
Commissioned: 1861
Decommissioned: August 18,1863
Fate: Sank in bad weather
General Characteristics
Displacement: 406 tons
Length: ?
Beam: ?
Draught: ?
Propulsion: Steam engine
Complement: ?
Armament: 1 32-pounder cannon

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