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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Portsmouth, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Portsmouth Naval Hospital

Administering to Both the Union and Confederacy

 
 
Portsmouth Naval Hospital Marker image. Click for full size.
By Scott Rollins, June 23, 2009
1. Portsmouth Naval Hospital Marker
Inscription. This is the site of the Portsmouth Naval Hospital which served both the Union and the Confederacy during the Civil War. The Portsmouth Naval Hospital, the U.S. Navyís first hospital, was founded in 1827 by Secretary of the Navy Samuel L. Southard. Architect John Haviland created Building No. Oneís impressive Greek Revival design which features an embellished Doric portico of 10 columns. The facility opened in 1830. The hospital was built on the site of the Fort Nelson of the Revolutionary War and War of 1812 era, which was a fortification made obsolete by the construction of Fortress Monroe across Hampton Roads on Old Point Comfort. Materials salvaged from the fortís demolition were used in the construction of the hospital building.

When Virginia left the Union the hospital was used by the Confederacy until Portsmouth was abandoned by Southern forces on May 10, 1862. The Union maintained the hospital through out the remainder of the War supporting the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron.

In the hospital grave yard is a memorial to the 337 dead of USS Cumberland and USS Congress killed when these vessels were sunk on March 8, 1862, by the CSS Virginia. Fifty-eight Confederates are also buried there.
 
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
 
Marker series.
Portsmouth Naval Hospital Marker image. Click for full size.
By Scott Rollins, June 23, 2009
2. Portsmouth Naval Hospital Marker
This marker is included in the Virginia Civil War Trails marker series.
 
Location. Marker has been reported missing. It was located near 36° 50.419′ N, 76° 17.952′ W. Marker was in Portsmouth, Virginia. Marker was on Crawford Parkway 0.1 miles east of Court Street, on the right when traveling west. Click for map. Marker was in this post office area: Portsmouth VA 23704, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this location. Elizabeth River (here, next to this marker but has been reported missing); Arnold's British Defenses, 1781 (here, next to this marker but has been reported missing); Crawford Bay (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Craney Island (about 600 feet away); Cornwallis at Portsmouth (about 700 feet away); a different marker also named Arnold's British Defenses, 1781 (about 700 feet away); Olde Towne Portsmouth (about 700 feet away); Spanish-American War 1898-1902 (about 700 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Portsmouth.
 
More about this marker. On the left is a photo of Building Number One. On the right is a painting captioned, "The Sinking of the 'Cumberland' by the Iron Clad 'Merrimac,' off Newport News, VA March 8, 1862." Sketched by F. Newman.
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Kristin Rollins of Portsmouth, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,808 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Kristin Rollins of Portsmouth, Virginia. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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