Lecture: “Our Little Monitor”

The Mariners' Museum and Park
100 Museum Drive
Newport News, VA 23606
United States 100 Museum Drive Newport News 23606


  • FREE with Museum Admission: $$1

Presented by Dr. Jonathan White, co-author of Our Little Monitor

FREE with $1 admission

On March 9, 1862, the USS Monitor met the CSS Virginia in battle in Hampton Roads, Virginia. This was the first time ironclad vessels would engage each other in combat. For four hours, the two ships pummeled one another as thousands of Union and Confederate soldiers and civilians watched from the shorelines. Although the battle ended in a draw, this engagement would change the very nature of naval warfare. The "wooden walls" of navies around the world suddenly appeared far more vulnerable to political and military leaders. At the same time, in the weeks after the Battle of Hampton Roads, Americans developed their own ideas for improving the Monitor or for sinking the Virginia. Dr. White will discuss some of the inventions devised by terrified northerners, as well as the legacy of the USS Monitor in American life and culture since its sinking on New Year's Eve 1862.