Battle of Memphis Ship Cards
This week marks the 159th Anniversary of the Battle of Memphis, which took place on 6 June 1862. So I thought it would be fitting to post up the semi-final draft of the ship cards involved in the battle in case you wanted to get into some ram on ram action, or as I like to call it: Ram-o-Rama '62
The battle was one of the largest naval engagements of the war. Five Union ironclads and four rams met the Confederate River Defense Fleet of eight rams outside Memphis on the Mississippi River on 6 June 1862. The result was a complete, one-sided defeat of the rebel rams, with only one escaping the action. However, only a few months before many of the same boats engaged each other outside Fort Pillow, a battle that left two Union ironclads at the bottom of the river with no rebel boats lost.
Rams were powerful weapons on the Mississippi where there channels and underwater obstacles made evasion difficult. Steam engines added power to the ancient tactic, where a boat could plow through the hull of the target and puncture it at or below the waterline, then reverse out of the way to make another attack. Both of these battles involving rams, plus the success of the CSS Virginia at Hampton Roads, made both navies paranoid about the possibility, even in circumstances that precluded ramming. While the practicalities of ramming faded sharply after the war, the lure of ramming stayed with naval architects for decades after.
So, in memory of the 149th anniversary of the Battle of Memphis, I've pulled together some ship cards:
I played a quick game using the Memphis rams and the result was pretty savage. I think the ramming rules might need to be adjusted down a bit! So if you happen to play a game, please let me know how things go!
Until next time,