Als Regarding Sinking Of The Sidewheeler Uss Merrimac W/cover By Survivor For Sale
An outstanding letter with cover. Excellent content from William Goff, an engineer originally aboard the Merrimac when she sank. He writes his parents;
“…I suppose by this time you have heard that the USS Merrimac was floundered at sea on Florida coast about one hundred & fifty miles from land. We took the gail Monday the 13th. It lasted till the 17th. We were picked up by the USN Steamer Morning Star bound to New York. This was the 16th. We were brought into Beauford & then we took the Steamer Quelen(sic) for Fort Monroe…"
He is by the time he rights the letter, disheartened and signs it.
"…From your son
Who is sick of the Navy
Goff was taken prisoner April 1 - Sept. 30th., 1864after the sinking of his previous ship the USS Southfield at the battle of Plymouth. The Merrimac was the third ship that sank while Goff was onboard (See my other item for sale, 6 Documents as well as other letters written by Engineer Goff)
USS Merrimac was a sidewheelsteamer first used in the Confederate Navy that was captured and used in theUnion Navy during the Civil War.
Merrimac was purchased inEngland for the Confederate government in 1862. After a successful career as ablockade runner, she was captured by USS Iroiquois off the coast of North Carolina, 24 July 1863. Purchased by the Navy from New York Prize Court 10 March 1864, Merrimac commissioned at New York 1 May 1864, Acting MasterWilliam Rogersin command.
Early in 1865 Merrimac was reassigned to the East Gulf Blockading Squadron. She got underway for the gulf early in February, but encountered extremely bad weather which forced her to stop at Beaufort, NC, on the 7th and at Charleston, SCon the 12th. Underway for Key Westthe next day, Merrimac ran into still worse weather which she fought until turning north on the 14th to seek the first port. On the afternoon of 15 February 1865, Acting MasterWilliam Earleordered the crew to abandon ship after its tiller had broken, two boilers given out and the pumps failed to slow the rising water. That night, when the crew had been rescued by mail steamer Morning Star, Merrimac was settling rapidly as she disappeared from sight. However, according to the Department Of The Navy - Naval Historical Center, the ship sank on January 15, 1865, though the letter's first-hand account seems to contradict that conclussion.
Excellent condition with original stamped cover.
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