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First Name: Charles

Last Name: Sigsbee

Birthplace: Albany, NY, USA

Gender: Male

Branch: Navy (present)


Middle Name: Dwight

Date of Birth: 16 January 1845

Date of Death: 19 July 1923

Rank or Rate: Rear Admiral

Years Served:
Charles Dwight Sigsbee

•  American Civil War (1861 - 1865)


Charles Dwight Sigsbee
Rear Admiral, U.S. Navy

Charles Dwight Sigsbee was born on 16 January 1845 in Albany, NY. He was educated at The Albany Academy.

Sigsbee was appointed acting midshipman on 16 July 1862. He fought in numerous engagements during the Civil War, mostly against Confederate forts and batteries. Sigsbee served aboard the USS Monongahela, USS Wyoming, and USS Shenandoah from 1863-69, when he was assigned to duty at the Naval Academy. In 1871, he was assigned to the Hydrographic Office. He was assigned to the Coast Survey in 1874 and commanded the Coast Survey steamer Blake from 1875-78. He returned to the Navy Hydrographic Office from 1878-82 and served as Hydrographer in the Bureau of Navigation from 1893-97. During his period on the Blake, he developed the Sigsbee sounding machine which became a standard item of deep-water oceanographic equipment for the next 50 years.

Sigsbee served at the U.S. Naval Academy 1869-71, 1882-85, and 1887-90. He commanded the Kearsarge on the European station 1885-86 and the training ship Portsmouth 1891-92.

Sigsbee took command of the battleship USS Maine in April 1897. After the Maine was destroyed in February 1898, Sigsbee and his officers were exonerated by a court of inquiry. Subsequently, he commanded the USS St. Paul in 1898 at the Second Battle of San Juan and Texas until 1900. In February of 1900, he was appointed Chief Intelligence Officer of the Office of Naval Intelligence, succeeding Cmdr. Richardson Clover; he held this post until April 1903 when he was succeeded by Commander Seaton Schroeder. He was promoted to Rear Admiral on 10 August 1903.

He assumed command of the South Atlantic Squadron in 1904, and the Second Division, North Atlantic Squadron in 1905.

Rear Admiral Sigsbee commanded the USS Brooklyn as his flagship on 7 June 1905, when she sailed for Cherbourg, France. There, the remains of the late John Paul Jones were taken aboard and brought back home for his internment at the U.S. Naval Academy.

Admiral Sigsbee retired from the Navy in 1907.


USS Sigsbee (DD-502) was named for him.

Sigsbee Deep, the deepest part of the Gulf of Mexico was discovered by ships under his command and it was named in his honor.

Death and Burial

Rear Admiral Charles Dwight Sigsbee died on 19 July 1923 in New York. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA.

His grandson, Charles Dwight Sigsbee III, First Lieutenant, U.S. Army, was buried next to him on 10 July 1956.

Honoree ID: 3082   Created by: MHOH




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