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Hardluck Ironclad: The Sinking and Salvage of the Cairo Paperback – June 1, 1980


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Hardluck Ironclad: The Sinking and Salvage of the Cairo + Petersburg Campaign, The: The Eastern Front Battles, June - August 1864, Volume 1
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Product Details

  • Series: Sinking and Salvage of the Cairo
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Louisiana State University Press; Revised edition (June 1, 1980)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807106844
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807106846
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #453,364 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 15, 1999
Format: Paperback
Ed Bearss is both one of the most knowledgeable Civil War historians of the present day AND one of the men who found the gunboat Cairo. "Hardluck Ironclad" is both Civil War history and modern archaeology... it details the history of the first warship in the world to be sunk by a mine and the story of the people who worked to raise her and display her at Vicksburg. Outstanding.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By C.Miller on September 21, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
188 Pages, plus Detailed Appendix, Notes, and Bibliography detailing the history of the USS Cairo in the Civil War and her six similar city-named sister-ships that fought the inland river patrols during the Civil War. Very well detailed and documented. An excellent source for history buffs and those interested in the unique river operations during that period. A good insight into the trials and tribulations of a nation at war. The book has 34 pages of B&W photos, including those of the salvage and raising of the USS Cairo after she had rested unfound on the bottom of the Yazoo River (a Mississippi tributary), for nearly 100 years, and also at her current location in the National Park at Vicksburg, MS with restoration in-progress. The USS Cairo, is the only one of these ironclads that has survived the War, as a testimony to their important role in winning the war for the Union forces.

The only thing missing from this record was a better, more complete collection of photos and illustrations detailing the structure and appearance of this ship. This information is provided (without all the historic info specific to the USS Cairo and its resurrection from the deep) in "Union River Ironclad 1861 -1865", by Angus Konstam * Illustrated by Tony Bryan Union River Ironclad 1861-65 (New Vanguard)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Matt Anderson on February 8, 2010
Format: Paperback
Do you want to know how to salvage a Civil War ironclad from a fast moving river? Then Bearss' book is a must read if you are having the problem of salvaging a 140 year wreck. Hardluck Ironclad was engrossing and kept this reader reading. It is a short book but packed with information. If you have heard Bearss (Ken Burns' Civil War or History Channel's Civil War Journal) speak; his passion for the Civil War is readily apparent and translates well into the book. The first part of the book is a well constructed but brief History of the war on the Upper Mississippi and construction of the City Class Ironclad Gunboats or the Pook Turtles. Other books discuss this time period in exhaustive (meaning minute details that just bore the reader) details but Bearss' pacing and focus is a great example for other Historians or amateur historians attempting to write a history of a ship. The second half of the book is the salvage which he was a major part of. Bearss doesn't make himself the topic or focus of the salvage but the ship remained his focus. Bearss brings interesting facts about the ship and the people involved that made the salvage less technical and more human interest. Truly a great book about an note worthy ship.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Vincent R. Pasquantonio on April 7, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Finding the ship was a miracle in itself, and the salvage and restoration was a great challenge. These vessels were fascinating examples of the complex technology needed for the job of reclaiming the river system from the Gulf of Mexico to the far North.
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