- USS St. Louis (1828)
USS "St. Louis" was a
sloopin the United States Navythrough most of the 1800s.
"St. Louis" was laid down on
12 February 1827at the Washington Navy Yard; launched on 18 August 1828; and commissioned on 20 December 1828, Master Commandant John D. Sloatin command.
On the day of her commissioning, "St. Louis" got underway and proceeded to
Norfolk, Virginia, for final outfitting. She departed Hampton Roadson 14 February 1829 and headed for Havana, Cuba. Thence, she proceeded, via Rio de Janeiroand Cape Horn, to Callao, Peru. Arriving there on 20 June, the sloop of war joined the Pacific Squadronunder Commodore Jacob Jones; and, until 8 September 1831, she cruised the coasts of the Americas to protect the trade and interests of the United States. On that day, she sailed for Cape Horn and the east coast; and arrived off Sandy Hook, New Jersey, on 9 December. She was laid up in ordinary at New Yorkon the 25th.
Recommissioned on 19 September 1832, "St. Louis" departed New York on 12 October to base at
Pensacola, Florida, as a unit of the West Indies Squadron. She spent the following six years, largely as flagship for the squadron, cruising the Caribbean. On 28 May 1838, she sailed from Havana for New York where she again was placed in ordinary on 1 July and laid up until 5 April 1839.
"St. Louis" sailed on 30 June to join the Pacific Squadron at
Monterey, California. En route, she put in at San Francisco, Californiawhere her commanding officer interceded with the government of Californiafor imprisoned foreign residents. She had the distinction of being the first American man-of-warto carry the flag into that port. Following operations off the coast of Peru, she returned to Norfolk on 15 September 1842 and was laid up in ordinary there the following day.
"St. Louis" was recommissioned on 27 February 1843 and soon joined the
East Indies Squadronas flagship. She was at Singaporeearly in 1844 while the first commercial treaty with Chinawas being negotiated. She returned to Norfolk in September 1845 where she underwent conversion to lengthen her hull by 13 feet. Departing from Norfolk on 11 August 1848, she sailed to Rio de Janeiro, where she served on the South American Stationuntil returning in July 1851.
"St. Louis" next departed from Norfolk on 24 August 1852 to cruise the
Mediterranean. On 2 July 1853, while she was at Smyrna, Turkey, her commanding officer demanded that the commander of the Austrian frigate, "Hussar", release Hungarian refugee Martin Koszta. The revolutionary leader had emigrated to the United States and announced his intentions of becoming an American citizen. Subsequently, while in Smyrna on business, he had been arrested by Austrian officials. Mediation by the French Consul effected Koszta's release.
"St. Louis" returned to New York on 8 May 1855 and sailed again in November to help suppress the slave trade along the western coast of
Africa, returning to New York on 9 February 1858. In September of that year, she joined the Home Squadronbased at Pensacola, Florida.
In January 1861, while serving with the Home Squadron off Verz Cruz,
Mexico, "St. Louis" was ordered to return to Pensacola to stand guard during the turmoil which preceded the outbreak of the American Civil War. In April, she aided in the reinforcement of Fort Pickens; then joined in the massive blockade of southern ports. On 5 September, she assisted "Brooklyn" in the capture of blockade-running Confederate "brig", "Macao", at the mouth of the Mississippi River. After being rearmed during a brief period in the Philadelphia Navy Yard, now armed with 4 8" Sg., 12 32-pdrs., 2 20-pdr. P.r., and 1 12-pdr. sb, she sailed on 24 February 1862 for Cadiz, Spain. For the next two years, she criss-crossed the Atlantic, cruised the African coast, and patrolled the areas in and around the Canary Islandsand the Azoresin search of Confederate commerce raiders. Cadiz and Lisbonwere her primary bases for such operations. She returned to Port Royal, South Carolina, on 26 November 1864 for service in the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron.
Three days later, sailors and marines from "St. Louis" went ashore at
Boyd's Landingto participate in the combined Army-Navy thrust up the Broad River. Under the command of Comdr. George H. Preble, the expedition was designed to assist General William Tecumseh Shermanas he approached Savannah, Georgiaat the end of his march across Georgia. This operation was completed on 29 December. "St. Louis" then briefly returned to blockade duty before finally sailing to the Philadelphia Navy Yardwhere she was decommissioned on 12 May 1865.
"St. Louis" spent the remainder of her career at Philadelphia. After being laid up in 1866 and declared unserviceable, she became a
receiving shipat League Islandand continued this duty until 1894 when she was loaned as a training vessel to the Naval Militia of the State of Pennsylvania.
On 30 November 1904, while she was engaged in this service, her name was changed to "Keystone State". She was finally struck from the Navy list on
9 August 1906and sold for scrapping, on 5 June 1907, to Joseph G. Hitnerof Philadelphia.
See USS "St. Louis" for other ships of this name.
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