SHIP STAMP SOCIETY
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20 June 1861 launched under the name PRINCESS ROYAL.
Tonnage 494 gross, 828 ton burden, dim. 196.9 x 27.3 x 16ft.
Powered by a 2-cyl steam engine, two boilers, one screw, speed 11 knots.
1860 Delivered to owners.
Ostensibly she was built for the Glasgow & Liverpool Steam Packet, but her appearance was more like a blockade-runner for the Confederacy than an Irish Channel steamer.
1862 Taken over by Fraser, Trendholm & Company, Charleston S.C. and she crossed the North Atlantic loaded with two badly needed marine engines and boilers for some ram-ships, under construction in Charleston. Other cargo on board was 600 barrels of gunpowder, 6 - 70-pound Whitworth cannons, 930 steel-headed Whitworth shells, 35 tons of projectile steel, a machine for molding and some provision, the total value of the cargo was £78.808.
Sailed from London and via Newfoundland, arrived mid January 1863 at Bermuda, she was heavily loaded with a draught of 11 feet, with this draught was she slow, and not very suitable to be used as a blockade runner.
Early in the morning of 29 January 1863 she approached the entrance of Charleston, where she was sighted by the schooner G.W. BLUNT that opened fire and warned the other vessels of squadron.
The steamer USS UNADILLA forced the PRINCESS ROYAL aground, but when boarding parties reached the vessel, most of the crew and passengers had left the ship. Only some British sailors stayed behind on board.
After Union warships towed her free, she was brought north, still with the British sailors on board who were hired by the federal commander, he was short of sailors.
The prize court at Philadelphia sold her and her cargo for $342.000.
18 March 1863 sold to the U.S. Navy Department for $112.000, and she was armed with 2 – 30 pound Parrot rifles, 1 - 11 inch Dahlgren gun and four 24-pound howitzers.
29 May 1863 commissioned under command of Melancthon B. Woolsey as USS PRINCESS ROYAL.
Assigned to the West Gulf Blockading Squadron.
28 June 1863 had a sharp engagement with some Confederate forces at Donaldsonville, LA, in which USS KINEO and WINONA also participated, driving the enemy forces off.
10 August 1863 she captured the British schooner FLYING SCUD loaded with cotton near Matamoros off the Rio Oranda, Tex.
The rest of 1863 and 1864 used in the blockading service, and she captured several small brigs and schooners.
07 December 1864 together with USS CHOCURA she captured the schooner ALABAMA, which was underway from Havana.
07 February 1865 off Galveston Tex. She and the USS BIENVILLE took several small schooners.
In the summer of 1865 she was ordered to head north and she arrived at 21 July at Philadelphia, where she was decommissioned.
17 August 1865 during a public auction sold to Samuel C.Cook for $54.175, and he renamed her in GENERAL SHERMAN.
Thereafter he sent the vessel to China, which at that time was in chaos because of the Taiping upraising.
The Chinese Government hired some foreign mercenaries of which some defected to the Taiping rebels.
A group of these defectors under command of the American Henry A. Burgevine boarded the GENERAL SHERMAN and on board of her he sailed to Formosa (Taiwan), but the Royal Navy captured her during the voyage. In the encounter Burgevine was killed.
Then her ownership became murky, most probably she was bought by the British firm Meadows & Co in Tientsin (Tianjin), and was she bought or chartered by a American merchant W.B. Preston, who sent the ship to Korea.
She was loaded with merchandise and on 09 August 1866 she sailed from Tientsin, under command of Capt. Page with a crew of 28 and the missionary/interpreter, Robert Thomas, the owner Preston was also on board, after a call at Chefoo (Yantai) for fresh water she sailed to Korea, arriving off the mouth of the Daedong River on 18 August.
05 September 1866 was she attacked near Pyongyang, and the complete crew was killed, the vessel was set on fire. For the attack and killing of the crew see http://www.kimsoft.com/2000Sherman.htm
The GENERAL SHERMAN did not sink she was grounded, but she was not lost, as some sources give; when the river levels rose she was refloated and moved to Seoul.
She was repaired and for some time was she the first engine powered warship of the Korean Navy. Under pressure of China she was handed back to her former American owner Samuel C. Cook in 1867.
Early 1868 bought by William F.Weld Co. Boston, Mass., who was building up his Merchants of Boston SS Co.
After a recondition and alternation she was put in the service from Boston to New Orleans service with accommodation for some passengers.
Her last voyage was, when she left on 04 January 1874 New York with on board a crew of 42 men and 4 passengers and general cargo consigned to New Orleans.
During the voyage the weather worsened and on 07 January at 02.00am. she sprung a leak, and the pumps could not manage the water level pouring in.
Her crew were rescued by the schooner SPRAY and FLORENCE and salvaged some cargo and the baggage of the passengers who disembarked at Wilmington N.C.
10 January the steam tug BRANDT steamed out from Wilmington and found the GENERAL SHERMAN still afloat, she managed to put a hawser on the ship and started towing.
Near Tub’s Inlet, twenty-seven miles from Cape Fear the GENERAL SHERMAN sank.
Korea North 2006 140ch sg?, scott?
Source: Clyde built ships. Lifeline of the Confederacy by Stephen R. Wise. http://www.kimsoft.com/2000/shermanr.htm Some other web-sites, a Google search give plenty on the ship.