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Dayton, Smith

SMITH A. DAYTON
United States Navy
Yaphank


Smith A. Dayton
United States Navy
Yaphank

Smith A. Dayton was employed as a seaman. He married Marie Thomas on February 7, 1849 in Brooklyn. Marie was a widow: her former husband, Francis Thomas, was lost at sea on the schooner, Elisha Ruckman, somewhere between Philadelphia and Boston.

As a seaman, it was natural that Smith Dayton would enlist in the Navy as an Ensign on July 22, 1863 at the age of 37. He left behind his wife and their son, Norman, who was born in 1857. He was assigned to the U.S.S. Glaucus. The Glaucus was a screw steamer built in New York in 1863 and was commanded by Captain Caldwell. The Glaucus' first task was to transport Senor Manuel Murilo, the newly elected President of Colombia, home to Cartagena in March.

Dayton, Smith

Constant gun drill, was the order of the day for Union ships, of the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron.

It then joined the North Atlantic blocking squadron off North Carolina in May 1864. The Glaucus was part of a squadron trying to stop Confederate blockade-runners from getting through to southern ports with supplies. On May 28, 1864, while pursuing a blockade-runner off the western bar of the Cape Fear River, the Glaucus caught fire and was nearly destroyed. It was taken to Philadelphia where carpenters managed to repair the ship.

Dayton was honorably discharged from the navy as an Ensign on September 14, 1865. He then returned to Yaphank, where he and Marie had two more children: Adelade, born in 1866; and Prudence, born in 1967.

He also returned to his maritime occupation, and became the owner and Captain of his own Bark, or ship, the Florence. The ship sank in a storm off the coast of the Washington Territory on November 17, 1875. Nearly all hands, including Dayton, drowned. There was only one survivor, a crew member named Deasy.

Marie was left to raise their three children, and mourn the death of her second husband lost at sea.

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