Katherine Brash Jeter
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A Confederate naval officer's heroic struggle to continue in the face of severe wartime material shortages.
A Man and His Boat: The Civil War Career and Correspondence of Lieutenant Jonathan H. Carter, CS, is the story of a Confederate naval officer's heroic struggle to complete a warship in the face of severe wartime material shortages.
Lieutenant Carter, a member of the first graduating class at the United States Naval Academy, was instructed on October 3, 1862, to contract for the building of one or more ironclad vessels of war on Red River. Carter, who had previous experience in outfitting Confederate warships in the Mississippi Valley, worked with two former steamboat masters to build the ironclad Missouri. The vessel was launched at Shreveport, Louisiana, on April 14, 1863, but supply and personnel shortages prevented the builders from completing the vessel until January 1864. Slow, inadequately armed, and staffed by disgruntled sailors, the Missouri constituted the backbone of the Confederacy's naval defenses on the Red River, but, confined to the Shreveport area by low water levels, the ironclad failed to take a meaningful part in the Red River campaign of 1864. The Missouri was the last Confederate ironclad to surrender in home waters.
Katherine Brash Jeter has edited and extensively annotated Lieutenant Carter's Civil War correspondence. Carter's letters demonstrate quite clearly the lack of resources in the Trans-Mississippi Department and the frustrations encountered by determined Confederate officers attempting to build a navy in the face of almost insurmountable obstacles. Carter's success in completing an ironclad in such an environment is testament to his competence and quiet determination.
Learn more about this remarkable Confederate naval officer. Order your copy of A Man and His Boat today!
Civil War Letters of Lt. Jonathan H. Carter, CSN.
Center for Louisiana Studies
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Dewey Decimal: 976
Library of Congress: 96-86024
Book Publisher: Center for Louisiana Studies
No. of Pages: 206