Friday, January 18, 2013

LEGO Ship Model Previews #6 and 7- USS Monitor and CSS Virginia

Shown above are our sixth and seventh preview models for LEGO shipbuilding day at the Hampton Roads Naval Museum. On the left is the ironclad USS Monitor and on the right is the ironclad CSS Virginia. The two ships were radically different approaches to ironclad construction. Virginia's designer went with a sloping armor in the shape of a casemate. John Ericsson, Monitor's designer, created a single revolving turret. The battle between these two ships on March 9, 1862, is among the famous battle in world history.

Throughout the rest of the Civil War, the respective sides used Virginia and Monitor as a model for future ironclads. The Confederacy built several more "casemate"-type ironclads, including CSS Tennessee, Albemarle, Arkansas, Virginia II, Richmond, Atlanta, and Fredericksburg. The U.S. Navy contracted for several dozen more monitor-type ships, but only commissioned about twenty. After the war, the U.S. Navy continued the monitor-type design well into the early 1900s, using steel instead of iron. Monitor-type ships were also used by U.S. forces during the Vietnam War. Several nations around the world built "monitors." The name can refer to any warship that has a turret, a low freeboard, and is designed for coastal or river duty.

And don't forget--
When: Saturday, February 2, 2013
Time: 10am to 5pm
Where: At HRNM (2nd floor of Nauticus)
Cost: FREE!

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