- USS Porpoise (1836)
The second USS "Porpoise" was a hermaphrodite (square rigged foremast and schooner rigged mainmast)
brigin the United States Navyduring the Mexican-American War. She was based on the same plans as "Dolphin".
"Porpoise" was authorized by Congress
30 June 1834; built in 1835; and launched 31 May 1836; Lieutenant William Ramsayin command.
"Porpoise" sailed from
Boston, Massachusetts 25 August 1836, called at various southern ports, and conducted coastal surveying operations under the direction of Lt. Charles Wilkesin the summer of 1837. In October 1837 she hunted pirates along the southern coast, and then resumed her survey work in December.
Cadwalader Ringgoldin command, was then assigned to the squadron which Wilkes was to command on an extended exploratory expedition around the world. She stood out of Hampton Roads 18 August 1838with the United States Exploring Expedition Squadron. She assisted in the exploration and survey work of the Expedition as it confirmed the existence of the AntarcticContinent, charted vast areas of the South Pacific, circumnavigated the world, and returned to New York four years later.
"Porpoise" underwent overhaul at New York at the end of 1842 and sailed
8 February 1843for the west coast of Africato join the squadron patrolling for slavers. She returned to New York 19 November 1844.
Between February 1845 and July 1847, "Porpoise" cruised in the
Gulf of Mexico, participating in the Naval operations against Tampico, Panuco, and Veracruzduring the War with Mexico. Upon return to Norfolk, Virginia, she decommissioned until 1 January 1848.
During the next three and a half years she hunted slavers along the west coast of Africa, touching at the United States in the spring of 1850. Returning to New York from this extended cruise
19 December 1851. She again decommissioned 3 August 1852.
Recommissioned in May 1853, she was assigned to
North Pacific Exploring and Surveying Expeditionunder Commander Cadwalader Ringgold, a veteran, like "Porpoise", of the Wilkes Expedition. She joined the squadron at Hampton Roads, and with it, stood out to sea 11 June 1853. "Porpoise" rounded the Cape of Good Hope, and with the squadron explored and charted many Pacific islands and shoals before arriving in Chinain March 1854. The squadron put to sea once more to explore in the Bonins, the Ladrones, and the Marianas. "Porpoise" parted company with the other vessels 21 September 1854between Formosa and China, and was never heard from again. It is supposed that she foundered in a heavy typhoon which occurred a few days after her separation from the squadron.
See USS "Porpoise" for other ships of this name.
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