Category Court Cases

Mrs. Alexander’s Cotton

The citation for this case is 69 US [2 Wall.] 404. In 1864, the Union conducted the Red River campaign under Major General Nathaniel Banks, operating with Admiral David Dixon Porter. Around March 26, a party from the USS Ouachita captured seventy-two bales of cotton from the plantation owned by sixty-five-year-old Mrs. Elizabeth Alexander. It was […]

The Slavers

Here we have four cases all dealing with condemnation of vessels as slave ships. The vessels and the citations for their cases were the Kate 69 US [2 Wall.] 350; the Sarah 69 US [2 Wall.] 366; the Weathergage 69 US [2 Wall.] 375; and the Reindeer 69 US [2 Wall.] 383. All four cases are from the December, 1864 term […]

The Venice

The citation for this case is 69 US [2 Wall.] 258. On May 15, 1862, the US Navy ship USS Calhoun captured a schooner named The Venice on Lake Pontchartrain near New Orleans, Louisiana. The schooner had a cargo of cotton owned by David G. Cooke, a British subject who had lived in New Orleans […]

The Circassian

The citation for this case is 69 US [2 Wall.] 135. On May 4, 1862 the US ship Somerset captured a steamship named Circassian flying British colors about seven-to-eight miles off the north coast of Cuba. Officers who boarded the vessel found evidence the ship was attempting to run the blockade and bring goods into the port […]

Kentucky v. Dennison

The citation for this case is 65 US [24 How.] 66. On October 4, 1859, Willis Lago, a free man of color, helped an enslaved woman named Charlotte, property of C. W. Nuckols, escape from her owner. “In 1859, a teenage, female slave named Charlotte, reportedly living in Louisville, Kentucky, accompanied her owner, C.W. Nuckols, on a […]

The Siren

The citation for this case is 74 US [7 Wall.] 152. In February of 1865 the US Navy captured the steamer Siren in Charleston Harbor, attempting to evade the blockade. A prize master and crew took control of the vessel and sailed it to Boston. En route, they had to put into New York port for […]

The Grapeshot

The citation for this case is 76 US [9 Wall.] 129. In April, 1858, the bark Grapeshot was in the port of Rio de Janeiro badly in need of repair, reprovisioning, and remanning in order to make its return to the United States. Its master, Joseph Clark, had no money to pay for this, so he […]