USS Monitor sinks

Aug 2006
23
#2
Very minimal, the CSA would have broken the blockade for a month, maybe. Until the north's factories pumped out a bunch of Iron clad warships. Plus the Merrimack was very underpowered it might have just sunk all on it's own with out northern help.
 
#3
The next ironclad available was USS Galena. A poor excuse for a warship. The blockade at Hampton Roads would have still been in effect because the Union still held Ft Monroe. Virginia was something of a "lash-up" as a warship, and very much a coal hog, but she was still pretty formidable for her day. Taking her to sea was out of the question, but she could have run pas Ft Monroe and operated between the entrace of Ches bay and Old Point Comfort thus "blockading" the Union position on the penninsula. Little Mac was allready terrified of her, and with the sea route cut off I'm thinking he would have abandoned his drive on Richmond via the penninsula........thus....R E Lee would not have assumed command of the Southern army when he was supposed to. The next Union ironclad that could have challenged Virginia was the USS New Ironsides and she was allmost a year away from completion.......as were the Passaics,......now the monitor design was looked upon with suspicion as it was, so if the prototype sank befor she had proved herself, the US Navy may not have gotten caught up in "Monitor Fever".
 

Lord_Cronus

Historum Emeritas
Jun 2006
1,047
Georgia
#4
atanker said:
The next ironclad available was USS Galena. A poor excuse for a warship. The blockade at Hampton Roads would have still been in effect because the Union still held Ft Monroe. Virginia was something of a "lash-up" as a warship, and very much a coal hog, but she was still pretty formidable for her day. Taking her to sea was out of the question, but she could have run pas Ft Monroe and operated between the entrace of Ches bay and Old Point Comfort thus "blockading" the Union position on the penninsula. Little Mac was allready terrified of her, and with the sea route cut off I'm thinking he would have abandoned his drive on Richmond via the penninsula........thus....R E Lee would not have assumed command of the Southern army when he was supposed to. The next Union ironclad that could have challenged Virginia was the USS New Ironsides and she was allmost a year away from completion.......as were the Passaics,......now the monitor design was looked upon with suspicion as it was, so if the prototype sank befor she had proved herself, the US Navy may not have gotten caught up in "Monitor Fever".
Excellent observation. One of the observers at the battle of the ironclads said, that when the two ships opened fired, all other navies in the world had become obsolete. I think with the Virginia terrorizing the coast, the Union would have had to place more effort on the blockade, and you could also say that with the success of the ironclad England may have wanted to get in on the action.
 
#6
Mr Erricsons reputation with the Navy would never have survived....so.......probably more ships like New Ironsides......now.....would Lee have ever assumed command if the penninsula campaign hadnt happened? With no "monitors" how would CS Navy ironclads have stacked up to "conventional" ironclads?
 
Aug 2006
275
#7
Ummm, correct me if im wrong, but maybe the Union could have just but iron plates on thier ships, the British had done it long befoer the Civil War, just not all Iron I think. It would have protected the ships preety weel I think. The Merrimak didnt have too much munuverablity and the cannons probally would have been hard to lift up (to fire higher)

So maybe the Union would have iron plated the ships' hulls?
 

Lord_Cronus

Historum Emeritas
Jun 2006
1,047
Georgia
#9
Breth said:
Ummm, correct me if im wrong, but maybe the Union could have just but iron plates on thier ships, the British had done it long befoer the Civil War, just not all Iron I think. It would have protected the ships preety weel I think. The Merrimak didnt have too much munuverablity and the cannons probally would have been hard to lift up (to fire higher)

So maybe the Union would have iron plated the ships' hulls?
The USS Constitution, Old Iron Sides, was one of the first that put iron plates on it's sides down to the water line. It was very effective. Forgive me if I'm wrong, but didn't most of the ships in the Civil War have some kind of iron scantlings?
 
#10
Many Union wooden warships had, at one time or another, chains drapped over their sides as an improvised "armor". Most "ironclad" ships were just that, clad. Even USS Monitor was basicaly an ironcovered wooden raft. The monitor turrets, however, were all iron armor. The Monitor's turret was 8in thick. Later monitors were much thicker. No monitor turret was ever penetrated by Confederate gunfire. On the other side, the base Confederate armor protection was 4in, with a backing od about 24in of wood. When CSS Atlanta was captured after a 20min engagement with a Union Monitor (whose 15in Dahlgren opened up the ships casemate) the CS Navy increased the thickness on their next ironclads (they commisioned 22 in all) to 6in and with the last ships, to 8in. It did no good. The 15in sb was capable of penetrating all. The most "formidable" Union naval vessel was probably USS New Ironsides. She was armed with 14 11in SBs and 2 150lb rifles. Her armor was about 4and a half inches with 22inches backing of wood.
 

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