What was Russia's reaction to the CSS Shenandoah's raids?

SeaTurtle

Private
Joined
Jun 14, 2021
The Shenandoah ended up attacking Yankee whalers in waters very close to both Russia's Siberian territory and Russian Alaska. Did Russia (or local Russian officials) have any sort of public reaction to this? What about Russian ships in those waters? Were there any measures taken by them to try and avoid getting mixed up in the conflict? Did the Russian navy maybe conduct patrols out there to avoid any misunderstandings?
 

leftyhunter

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Joined
May 27, 2011
Location
los angeles ca
The Shenandoah ended up attacking Yankee whalers in waters very close to both Russia's Siberian territory and Russian Alaska. Did Russia (or local Russian officials) have any sort of public reaction to this? What about Russian ships in those waters? Were there any measures taken by them to try and avoid getting mixed up in the conflict? Did the Russian navy maybe conduct patrols out there to avoid any misunderstandings?
Paging @Mark F. Jenkins .
Leftyhunter
 

Mark F. Jenkins

Colonel
Member of the Year
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Mar 31, 2012
Location
Central Ohio
I don't believe I have ever heard of any Russian reaction to the Shenandoah. It happened and was over relatively quickly, from the international point of view, and the Confederate cruiser didn't attack anything in the Bering Strait and other areas but Yankee whalers (of which there were plenty).
 

Fairfield

Sergeant Major
Joined
Dec 5, 2019
The Shenandoah ended up attacking Yankee whalers in waters very close to both Russia's Siberian territory and Russian Alaska.
It's not surprising that the whaling ships were Confederate targets. First economic considerations (at its height, whaling was the 5th largest sector of the US economy) and, secondly, social considerations (based on meritocracy, blacks made up an estimated 1/4 to 1/3 of whaling crews; there were black whaling captains).
 

SeaTurtle

Private
Joined
Jun 14, 2021
I don't believe I have ever heard of any Russian reaction to the Shenandoah. It happened and was over relatively quickly, from the international point of view, and the Confederate cruiser didn't attack anything in the Bering Strait and other areas but Yankee whalers (of which there were plenty).

Didn't the Shenandoah at one or two points impersonate a Russian vessel to get close to an American ship? Not sure how that would have gone down with the Russians if they knew.

"On 28 May 1865, on the edge of an ice field, Waddell hoisted Russian colors and at 500 yards fired a salvo across Abigail’s bow ... Afterwards, the New Bedford whaling bark was put to the torch 620 miles north of the Kurile Islands."

"The 495 ton William Thompson was hampered by having a whale lashed to her side and the 364 ton Euphrates wasn’t bothered by the approaching steamer with the Russian ensign flying. Upon finding out the true nature of the mysterious vessel, William Thompson’s master, Capt. Francis Smith, insisted to Waddell that the war was over. Waddell, taking that intelligence as a stratagem of Smith’s to save his ship, had both ships set ablaze northeast of Cape Narrows."

https://www.history.navy.mil/research/histories/ship-histories/confederate_ships/shenandoah.html
 

Fairfield

Sergeant Major
Joined
Dec 5, 2019
"On 28 May 1865, on the edge of an ice field, Waddell hoisted Russian colors and at 500 yards fired a salvo across Abigail’s bow ... Afterwards, the New Bedford whaling bark was put to the torch 620 miles north of the Kurile Islands."
Apparently the Confederates told Capt. Nye of the Abigail that they (Confederates) had entered into a treaty with the whales! ☺️
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2011
Location
mo
The Shenandoah was the precursor to whale wars and the sea shepherds.........
 
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Zack

First Sergeant
Joined
Aug 20, 2017
Location
Los Angeles, California
Interesting stuff. I confess to not knowing about the Russian reaction to Confederate raiders.

There is of course the story of Russian fleets staying in New York and San Francisco during a period of heightened tensions in Europe 1863-1864.
https://www.history.navy.mil/resear...the-russian-navy-visits-theunited-states.html

http://www.militarymuseum.org/CzarsFleet.pdf

https://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/27/world/europe/27iht-letter27.html

Weirdly I can't find any good images from San Francisco....all the below are New York and the East Coast.

D5569A92-9911-4CC8-80F4-118B5957A1F0.jpeg

7C12C1E0-1330-4358-BEFD-E8322E1C7B6B.jpeg
82CFA104-5D23-4246-9170-28B59B5B8918.jpeg

BC51F7FA-408C-44EA-B0F4-DF0F97FC14F8.jpeg
664EA1C6-A0A8-495B-87A2-9D7D86921B29.jpeg
AFDAA61A-1B12-4BB4-94E0-0FFF7F81E0C9.jpeg
 
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