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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Vicksburg in Warren County, Mississippi — The American South (East South Central)
 

The Sinking of Cairo

 
 
The Sinking of Cairo Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
1. The Sinking of Cairo Marker
Inscription.
On December 12, 1862, on the Yazoo River, a Confederate torpedo tore open Cairo's bow. The Union gunboat sank in 12 minutes. Cairo became the first armored warship sunk by an electrically detonated mine.

The torpedo which sank Cairo was a crude apparatus. Lieutenant Commander Selfridge may have been less than cautious in waters known to contain torpedoes becasue so many of the Confederate weapons had been duds.

Two Confederate sailors, Acting Masters Zedekiah McDaniel and Francis M. Ewing, had charge of placing the torpedoes. Volunteers, whose names are lost to history, hid behind the river bank and detonated the explosive with an electric charge.

The damage from the blast can be seen on the port bow.

(captions)
This drawing represents the Confederate torpedo (a mine in today's language) that sank Cairo. It is taken from a sketch which accompanied an official Union report of the incident.

Wood Float/Wires to galvanic cell on shore/5-gallon glass demihohn filled with black powder/Rope to shore/Anchor
 
Location. 32° 22.539′ N, 90° 52.004′ W. Marker is in Vicksburg, Mississippi, in Warren County. Marker is on Cairo Museum Circle north of Union Avenue, on the right when traveling
The Sinking of Cairo Marker Illustration image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
2. The Sinking of Cairo Marker Illustration
north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Vicksburg MS 39183, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. U.S.S. Cairo (here, next to this marker); Vicksburg Navy Memorial (approx. 0.2 miles away); Tennessee (approx. 0.4 miles away); John Adams (approx. 0.4 miles away); Randal W. MacGavock (approx. 0.4 miles away); Fort Nogales (approx. 0.4 miles away); Fort Nogales 1791 (approx. 0.4 miles away); Campaign, Siege and Defense of Vicksburg, 1863. (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Vicksburg.
 
More about this marker. The marker is located next to the remains at the Cairo Museum, under the canopy.
 
Also see . . .  USS Cairo Gunboat and Museum. Vicksburg National Military Park, National Park Service (Submitted on October 5, 2015.) 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
The USS Cairo and Museum image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
3. The USS Cairo and Museum
USS Cairo image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
4. USS Cairo
USS Cairo image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
5. USS Cairo
USS Cairo image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
6. USS Cairo
USS Cairo image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
7. USS Cairo
USS Cairo image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
8. USS Cairo
National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
9. National Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark Marker
Cairo Museum Bell Display image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
10. Cairo Museum Bell Display
Cairo Museum Display Model image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
11. Cairo Museum Display Model
Cairo Museum Display Model 2 image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
12. Cairo Museum Display Model 2
Cairo Museum Display image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
13. Cairo Museum Display
Cairo Stores Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
14. Cairo Stores Marker
The Chimneys Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brandon Fletcher, November 28, 2008
15. The Chimneys Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 2, 2015, by Brandon Fletcher of Chattanooga, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 217 times since then and 72 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15. submitted on October 2, 2015, by Brandon Fletcher of Chattanooga, Tennessee. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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