Boutwell (George S.), 1873

Nov. 4, 2020

Boutwell (George S.), 1873

A photo of USRC Boutwell

George S. Boutwell (1818-1905) was appointed by President Ulysses S. Grant to be the 28th Secretary of the Treasury. He served from March 12, 1869 until March 16, 1873.  Boutwell had spent a long career in public service, including tours of duty as the first Commissioner of Internal Revenue during 1862 and 1863.  He also served as a Congressman from 1863 until 1869, before being appointed by President Ulysses S. Grant as Secretary of the Treasury in 1869.

Builder: David Bell, Buffalo, New York

Length: 138'

Beam: 23'

Draft: 6' 9"

Displacement: 198 tons

Rig: Topsail Schooner

Cost: $70,000

Commissioned: 29 October 1873

Decommissioned: 26 July 1907

Disposition: Sold

Machinery: Semi-compound steam engine; twin propellers

Performance & Endurance:

Complement: 38

Armament: 2


This iron-hulled vessel was fitted with unusual machinery in which the two cylinders could operate independently or together as a compound engine.  The Boutwell was constructed for the southern coast and was initially based out of Savannah, Georgia.  She was directed to make a monthly cruise to Jacksonville, Florida in addition to her regularly assigned duties.  She was driven aground near McQueens Island in the Savannah River by a hurricane in 1881 and refloated. Her boiler was replaced and her machinery and hull repaired by Malster and Reavey of Baltimore in 1882.  She was then ordered back to Savannah where her assigned cruising grounds were between St. Helena Sound to Brunswick, Georgia with "occasional visits to Jacksonville."

In 1895 her cruising grounds were changed to Charleston, South Carolina to Jacksonville, Florida.  On 20 May 1897 she was ordered to cooperate with the Navy by an Executive Order dated 27 April 1897.  She was ordered to return to Treasury Department control on 1 June 1897.

The Boutwell was decommissioned in Baltimore, Maryland and sold 23 Oct. 1907 for $2,010.


                                                A photo of USRC Boutwell

USRC Boutwell with black hull, July, 12 1892


USRC Boutwell with white hull, no date


Donald Canney.  U.S. Coast Guard and Revenue Cutters, 1790-1935.  Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1995.

U.S. Coast Guard.  Record of Movements: Vessels of the United States Coast Guard: 1790 - December 31, 1933.  Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1934; 1989 (reprint).