On This Date in History:
In the early parts of the American Civil War, the Union warship Merrimack was sunk in Norfolk harbor. The Confederates promptly raised the ship and took it back for repairs. But, the repairs they made were not ordinary. Instead, they put iron plating on the wooden ship. While it had armaments, it was thought that the “ironclad” could be used to ram enemy wooden ships. So, on March 8, 1862 the ironclad, rechristened the Virginia, ran a Union blockade of Hampton Roads, Virginia. The ship sank a Union sloop and seriously damaged a frigate. On this date in 1862 the Virginia returned to finish off the frigate and take on the other ships in the blockade only to find themselves facing the great cheesebox.
There were those on the Union side that referred
A flash of gunpowder blinded the captain of the Monitor and so he withdrew temporarily to gain his wits. Well, the captain of the Virginia thought that the Monitor was chickening out and on the retreat…which was a convenient thought because the only ship that was really wounded was his own. Perhaps from running into the Monitor or as a result from cannon shot, but for whatever reason the Virginia had sprung a leak. So, while the Monitor‘s captain tried to regain his sight, the the captain of the Virginia thought it was a good opportunity to leave. The two combatants returned home, both declaring victory. I suppose the argument for the Confederates was that the Union ship withdrew while the Union could say that the Confederates abandoned the field of battle. Either way, this battle is most significant in that it marked the beginning of the end of wooden war ships.
Now, these captains seem to have issues but not as many as the Confederate captain of the Shenandoah who left for combat toward the end of the war in 1865. His mission was to disrupt the Northern economy by attacking whaling ships. So, he went to the Pacific Ocean. He went all the way to Australia as he scuttled and burned ships. Trouble was, the war was over. One whaling captain showed Captain James Waddell a newspaper announcing the surrender at Appomattox Courthouse. Waddell thought it was a trick. So, he went north to the Bering Strait where he took down some more ships. Finally, he came across British ship and Waddell asked the captain for news from the war. The captain asked “what war?” The Civil War had been over for 4 months. When the Shenandoah decided it best not to return to America and instead headed west. When it had reached England, it had sailed over 60,000 miles and nearly circumnavigated the globe. It took down 38 ships, many of which were done in after the war had ended. The tardy shot it fired in the Bering Strait was the last of the Civil War. Not sure if Captain Waddell felt bad or not…but I’m sure the 38 whalers weren’t too pleased.
Weather Bottom Line: On Sunday, the storms came in before the sun went down and there was plenty of dynamic energy aloft to support some pretty decent storms. Most were, from my perspective, trying to become developed super cells but didn’t quite make it. As I had suspected, the activity was more exciting to the west and north with a very strong cell in the extreme northern part of the viewing area in Lawrence County. A tornado was spawned and as of this writing, there has been limited but extensive damage. Here is a initial report from the AP. I am not aware of any injuries or fatalities. There were several cells south of Louisville that were indicated by radar as having rotation but produced mainly gusty winds as the rotation was mainly aloft.
Now, we cool off a bit in the first part of the week then warm up prior to a cold front. After the front we chill down for the latter part of the week. The GFS even tries to throw out some snow by Friday or Saturday. Not sure about that…but what would be of concern is that it appears to me that the general upper level flow remains similar to what we had today. The SPC does not advertise any severe threat thsi far out for the middle of the week but, it would be something that should be considered as a possibility as we continue down the road.