Military Wiki
CSS Fredericksburg
Battle of Trent's Reach.jpg
CSS Fredericksburg (far right) during the battle of Trent's Reach in 1865.
Name: CSS Fredericksburg
Operator: Confederate States Navy
Laid down: 1862
Launched: 1863
Commissioned: March 1864
Fate: Destroyed to prevent capture, 4 April 1865
General characteristics
Tons burthen: 2,500
Length: 188 ft (57 m)
Beam: 40 ft 3 in (12.27 m)
Draft: 9 ft 6 in (2.90 m)
Propulsion: Steam engine
Speed: 5 knots (9.3 km/h)
Range: 4,160 nmi (7,700 km) at 80 kn (150 km/h)
Complement: 150 officers and men
Armament: • 1 × 11 in (280 mm) smoothbore cannon
• 1 × 8 in (200 mm) rifled cannon
• 2 × 6.4 in (160 mm) rifled cannons
Service record
Part of: James River Squadron

CSS Fredericksburg was an ironclad of the Confederate States Navy during the American Civil War.

Fredericksburg was built at Richmond, Virginia in 1862-1863. The CSS Fredericksburg was the second ironclad to be completed in Richmond. On November 30, 1863 she was reported completed and awaiting armament. In March 1864 she was taken down to Drewry's Bluff to be fitted out, and placed under the command of Commander Thomas R. Rootes, CSN.

Fredericksburg, one of the ships of the James River Squadron commanded by Commodore John K. Mitchell, CSN, was actively engaged in the James River from mid-1864 until the end of the war. Accompanied by the CSS Virginia II and nine other ships, the Fredericksburg participated in an engagement with the Union ship USS Onondaga at Trent's Reach on June 21, 1864, but little damage was inflicted on either side due to the distance between them.[1] Similar inconclusive encounters took place in August, October, December, and the following January. With the evacuation of Richmond on April 3, 1865, the Confederates blew up Fredericksburg and other ships in the vicinity the following day. The Confederate Fleet was found in the James River. Her remains lie about 50 yards up river from her sister ship. The ship lies parallel with the river under the mud, which might be between six to 15 feet deep.[2]


The commanders of the CSS Fredericksburg were:[3]

  • Commander Thomas R. Rootes (March 1864-December 1864)
  • Lieutenant Francis E. Shepperd (?-December 28, 1864; January 14-January 25, 1865)
  • Lieutenant Alphonse Barbot, Executive Officer in Charge (February 1865)



  • Silverstone, Paul H. (2006). Civil War Navies 1855–1883. The U.S. Navy Warship Series. New York: Routledge. ISBN 0-415-97870-X. 
  • Still, William N., Jr. (1985). Iron Afloat: The Story of the Confederate Armorclads (Reprint of the 1971 ed.). Columbia, South Carolina: University of South Carolina Press. ISBN 0-87249-454-3. 
  • This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. The entry can be found here.

External links

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