Monday, June 05, 2006

CSS Arkansas Featured in Sea Classics Magazine

The July 2006 issue of Sea Classics magazine features a detailed article about the construction and brief combat career of the Civil War Confederate Ironclad Ram CSS Arkansas.

Originally laid down near Memphis, TN in October 1861, Arkansas was supposed to be delivered to the Confederate Navy three months later. By the time she actually entered service on 12 July 1862, the Union Navy controlled much of the Mississippi.

Arkansas saw combat almost immediately, engaging Union ships twice on the 14th as she made the dash from the Yazoo River to the city of Vicksburg, then under seige by Union naval forces. Her presence at Vicksburg forced the Union ships to keep up steam constantly, and this drain on their resources eventually forced them to withdraw, breaking the siege.

Arkansas' career ended just a few days later, when she set forth from Vicksburg to support a Confederate attack on Baton Rouge. During the mission, on 06 August, 1862, her engines failed during an engagement with the Union ironclad Essex. She ran aground and was intentionally burned to prevent her capture.

In 21 days, CSS Arkansas was in five battles with Union ships. She badly damaged many of her opponents and established a fearsome reputation during her short career.

The article in Sea Classics magazine is illustrated with period engravings and is well worth reading. More information about CSS Arkansas can be found on the US Naval Historical Center website.

In addition, a model of CSS Arkansas can be seen in the foyer of the North Little Rock City Services Building. AIMM also has replica blueprints of this and other Civil War-era vessels for examination by researchers or other interested patrons.


We are now operating under our summer hours. The museum and Razorback will be closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays of each week and will be open from 10 AM until 6 PM on all other days except Sundays when the hours will be 1 PM until 6 PM. Please remember to call 501-371-8320 or keep an eye on the blog or website at for updates.

Also, be sure to check the weather map in the links found on the front page of the blog because in the event of inclement weather, for the safety of patrons and staff, we shut down the tours.


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