#OnThisDay in 1862 Harper’s Weekly published this engraving of the ironclad USS Passaic highlighting the impressive armament carried in the ship’s turret.
Passaic was built at Continental Iron Works in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, for the Union Navy during the American Civil War. She was designed by John Ericsson, who had designed the famous USS Monitor the year before. After the experimental Monitor was recognized as a success, the Union ordered a series of ironclads based on Monitor’s design. For Passaic, Ericsson made some changes to the Monitor design, including adjustments to the ship’s armament.
This Harper's Weekly engraving shows Passaic’s two large Dahlgren smooth-bore guns: one 11-inch and the other 15-inch, each weighing 42,000 pounds. The larger of the two Dahlgren guns, which were also known as “soda-bottle” guns due to their shape, could fire a shot weighing 425 pounds over a mile.
Image: Harper's Weekly, publisher. “Interior of the Turret of the ‘Passaic’” December 6, 1862 p. 773. Paper, ink. Gift of Mavis P. Kelsey, M.D., 1998.007.0308
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