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First Name: Cadwalader

Last Name: Ringgold

Birthplace: Hagerstown, MD, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Navy (present)


Date of Birth: 20 August 1802

Date of Death: 29 April 1867

Rank or Rate: Rear Admiral

Years Served:
Cadwalader Ringgold

•  American Civil War (1861 - 1865)


Cadwalader Ringgold
Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy

Cadwalader Ringgold was born on 20 August 1802 in Hagerstown, MD.

He entered the Navy in 1819 and commanded the USS Weazel in action against West Indies Pirates in the late 1820s. From 1838-42, he participated in the Wilkes Expedition in the Pacific, commanding the USS Porpoise.

Promoted to Commander in 1849, he began the definitive survey of the San Francisco Bay region. His location for a dockyard for the Navy's Pacific station became the Mare Island Navy Yard. In 1853, he took command of the North Pacific Exploring and Survey Expedition, also known as the Rodgers-Ringgold Expedition. For the next several years, he was in Washington, DC, working on the North Pacific Exploring and Surveying Expedition charts, which were later used by the U.S. Navy in World War II.

He returned to the fleet with the rank of Captain during the Civil War and was in command of the USS Sabine, and effected the rescue of a battalion of 400 U.S. Marines from Maryland, whose transport steamer USS Governor, was sinking during a severe storm at Port Royal, SC. In February 1862, he was in command of the search and rescue for the ship USS Vermont that was lost in a storm. For these rescues, Ringgold received commendations from the Maryland Legislature and the U.S. Congress, along with a gold medal from the Life Saving Benevolent Association.

Promoted to Commodore, he was sent on patrol to search for Confederate raiders in the vicinity of Bermuda and then the New England coast. After the war, he retired as a Rear Admiral. He served 45 years in the U.S. Navy as a sailor, explorer and surveyor.


His father was U.S. Congressman Samuel Ringgold. His brother, Major Samuel Ringgold, U.S. Army, was a Mexican-War hero.

Death and Burial

Rear Admiral Cadwalader Ringgold died on 29 April 1867 in New York, NY. He is buried next to his brother, Major Samuel Ringgold, at Green Mount Cemetery in Baltimore, MD.

Honoree ID: 3002   Created by: MHOH




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