A front view of the Civil War ironclad gunboat, the USS Cairo.
The only remaining ironclad of its type left in existence, she is the sole survivor of a fleet of river gunboats built by the Union during the Civil War to control the lower Mississippi River. The Cairo sunk in the Yazoo River while clearing mines on December 12, 1862, and was buried in mud for nearly 100 years. Discovered in 1956, and raised in 1964, along with all her guns, ammunition, ship store, and personal items left behind by her crew.
The USS Cairo along with her six sister boats dominated the Mississippi River. These ironclad vessels were 175 feet long, with steam-driven engines, armor plating, and 13 canons and they could do a top speed of 9 miles per hours.
USS Cairo is listed as a National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark. She is located at the USS Cairo Museum inside the Vicksburg National Military Park in Vicksburg, Mississippi.
Copyright 2019 Susan Rissi Tregoning
April 25th, 2019
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