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Lincoln's Secret Weapon

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Tour the Monitor
by Jeff Johnston

Though diminutive for a warship at just 172 feet long, the USS Monitor packed a wallop in terms of technological advancements. Its designer, the Swede John Ericsson, stuffed it with up to 40 of his own patentable inventions, from a revolving gun turret to flushing toilets (both firsts). While leaky, dark, and often intolerably hot, the Monitor was also quite well-appointed, with gold-gilt china and paneling of the finest walnut and oak. After familiarizing yourself with the Monitor's layout below, take a tour of the ship that ushered in the era of armored, steam-powered navies. To learn how the striking 360° panoramas we present here were created, see Remaking the Monitor.
Top and Side Diagrams of Monitor

Intro | Galley | Deck | Canopy | Wardroom | Officer's Cabin | Captain's Cabin | Captain's Stateroom | Turret | Pilothouse | Chain Locker | Berth Deck | Engine Room - Forward | Engine Room - Aft

Jeff Johnston is a researcher at the Monitor National Marine Sanctuary in Newport News, Virginia. A specialist in the navies of the American Civil War, he is one of the leading authorities on the USS Monitor (and Monitor-class vessels), particularly the details of her layout and construction.

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