Diary of Orrin Brown—April 30, 1865

USS UnadillaDiary of Orrin Brown, off Cape Hattteras, North Carolina.

Sunday–Apr. 30th

We had quite a shower of rain in the night but it came off pleasant this morning. Those men that were examined yesterday were sent off this PM myselfe with the rest. We got aboard of the ocean steamer Kennebeck at the city of Newberne N. C. at about 7 PM and we left the dock at 9 PM and had a very nice still time. I read 6 Chapts. today. I begin to feel a little better.

The USS Kennebec that served in the Civil War was an Unadilla-class gunboat launched in 1861.  The ship displaced 691 tons, and was 158′ long by 28′ wide, with two steam engines and two-mast schooner sails.  Armament included an 11″ Dahlgren smoothbore, two 24 pound smoothbore cannon and two 20 pound Parrot rifles.  The Kennebec served Admiral David Farragut’s blockade off the Gulf Coast and up the Mississippi River, seeing action at Vicksburg and Mobile.  It was reported the Unadilla-class ships sailed well in a strong wind, but rolled badly.  At this time, the Kennebec was under command of LCDR Trivet Abbot.  The gunboat was decommissioned at Boston Navy Yard 9 August 1865.

During World War II, the Kennebec-class oiler ships included 16 U.S. Navy medium oilers in three related designs, some of which are sill in commercial service.  In 1942, the name USS Kennebec (AO-36) was given to the SS Corsicana, built in 1939.  The ship was decommissioned four times before being scrapped in 1982.



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