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USS Bainbridge (1842)

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Title: USS Bainbridge (1842)  
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Subject: USS Bainbridge, James Thornton (naval officer), Brazil Squadron, Henry A. Walke, United States naval architect
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USS Bainbridge (1842)

USS Bainbridge
USS Bainbridge
United States of America
Name: USS Bainbridge
Namesake: William Bainbridge
Operator:  United States Navy
Cost: 40790 dollars
Launched: April 26, 1842
Commissioned: December 16, 1842
Fate: Capsized, August 21, 1863
General characteristics
Type: Brig
Displacement: 259 long tons (263 t)
Length: 100 ft (30 m)
Beam: 25 ft (7.6 m)
Draft: 14 ft (4.3 m)
Propulsion: Sails
Speed: 11.5 kn (13.2 mph; 21.3 km/h)
Complement: 100 officers and enlisted
Armament: 12 × 32 pdr (15 kg) carronades

The first USS Bainbridge was a brig in the United States Navy during the American Civil War. She was named for William Bainbridge.

Bainbridge was launched on April 26, 1842 by Boston Navy Yard and commissioned on December 16, 1842, Commander Z. F. Johnston in command.

Sailing from Boston on January 26, 1843, Bainbridge served with the Home Squadron until returning to New York on May 3, 1844. From June 26, 1844 – October 10, 1847, she served with the Brazil Squadron. She laid up for most of the next year, and from 10 April 1848-2 July 1850 was with the African Squadron. She departed New York on November 2 and until September 1856 cruised with both the African and Brazil Squadrons. She returned to Norfolk on September 10, 1856.

Laid up at Norfolk Navy Yard from September 18, 1856 – April 28, 1858, she departed Hampton Roads, Virginia on May 18, 1858 to join Commodore William B. Shubrick's Paraguay expedition for operations against Paraguay in retaliation for the attack on Water Witch in 1855. Bainbridge arrived at Asunción, Paraguay, in company with the squadron in January 1859 and after the matter had been peacefully settled remained with the Brazil and African Squadrons until departing Rio de Janeiro on September 17, 1860. She arrived at Boston on November 9 and was placed out of commission.

Recommissioned on May 1, 1861, Bainbridge sailed for the Gulf of Mexico on 21 May and cruised there until June 1862. While in the area she captured two schooners and assisted in the capture of one steamer. On August 3, 1862, she sailed from New York to join the East Gulf Blockading Squadron at Key West, Florida.

In September 1862, she was ordered to Aspinwall, Panama, where — from November 22–24 — a severe storm forced her to jettison all spars, sails, gun carriages, howitzers, shot, powder, provisions, and water. After extensive repairs she sailed for New York, arriving in May 1863. On August 21, 1863, while proceeding to her station with the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron, she capsized off Cape Hatteras with the loss of all but one of her crew.


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