Brooklyn Navy Yard USS San Jacinto Screw Frigate 1851

This is an antique woodcut engraving titled "The United States War Steamer San Jacinto." published in Gleason's Pictorial, a Boston weekly newspaper, in 1851. It is in excellent good condition and shows a view of a famous 19th century screw propeller steamship. The engraving is accompanied by a brief article describing the ship and her construction in the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

The first USS San Jacinto was an early screw frigate in the United States Navy during the mid 1800s. She was named for the San Jacinto River, site of the Battle of San Jacinto during the Texas Revolution. She is perhaps best known for her role in the Trent Affair of 1861.

San Jacinto was laid down by the New York Navy Yard in August 1847, and launched on 16 April 1850. She was sponsored by Commander Charles H. Bell, Executive Officer of the New York Navy Yard.

No record of San Jacinto's commissioning ceremony has been found, but her first commanding officer, Captain Thomas Crabbe, reported on board on 18 November 1851. The earliest page of the ship's log which has survived is dated 26 February 1852, but San Jacinto's service began earlier. Some evidence suggests that the frigate got under way for test runs late in 1851.

Built as an experimental ship to test new propulsion concepts, the screw frigate was plagued by balky engines
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