Savannah News: The Bark Elliot Ritchie - The Daily Constitution - 14 March 1878

Savannah News: The Bark Elliot Ritchie1

The bark Elliot Ritchie, Captain Hutchins, which is now lying at the wharf opposite the upper rice mill, will scarcely be recognized as the dashing revenue cutter Harriet Lane, which played such a prominent part during the late war. Yet such she is, and is the original cutter, with the exception of the upper deck, which was added when she was converted into a merchant bark. The Harriet Lane was named for the niece of the late ex-President James Buchanan and the accomplished lady who did the honors at the white house for her bachelor uncle. She was noted as one of the fastest revenue cutters in the United States service. In 1863, off Galveston, she was run down and captured by the steamers Bayou City and Neptune and turned over to the confederate authorities. An interesting account of this affair is found in Horace Greeley's history of the war. Shortly afterwards she was fitted up and succeeded in running the blockade to Havana. From some cause she was abandoned at that place and after the war was delivered to the United States authorities by the Spanish government, and was taken to Philadelphia. She was there sold and taken to Boston where an upper deck was fitted to her, and she was converted into the bark Elliot Ritchie, Captain Hutchins and Nehemiah Gibson becoming her owner. She has for the past eight years been engaged in the cotton trade, running between southern and foreign ports. She is six hundred and fifteen tons, a neat vessel, and remarkably fast. On the forward part of her wheel may be seen the inscription which was placed there when she was first entered in the United States service, being no other than the immortal words of the gallant Lawrence, "Don't give up the ship."

More about The Elliot Ritchie



Harriet Lane

Horace Greeley



1The Daily Constitution - Atlanta Georgia - March 14, 1878 - pg. 4.