USS Westfield (1862-1863) A Virtual Cemetery created by: Rubbings
Description: USS Westfield, an 822-ton side-wheel inshore gunboat, was built in 1861 at New York City as a civilian ferryboat. She was purchased by the Navy in November 1861 and placed in commission in January 1862. Sent to the Gulf of Mexico in February, Westfield took an active part in the April campaign to open the lower Mississippi River and capture New Orleans. During the following three months, the gunboat supported the mortar schooner flotilla in operations up the river toward Vicksburg.Sent to join the blockading force off Texas later in the summer of 1862, Westfield participated in the capture of Galveston in early October. She thereafter operated in that area. On 1 January 1863, while serving as flagship of the Federal naval forces off Galveston, she ran aground and was threatened by a daring Confederate attack. To prevent capture, USS Westfield was blown up by her crew.