British Blockade Runners of the American Civil War: The Story of Joannes Wyllie

National Archives Museum

Friday, November 12, 2021 - 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Joannes Wyllie was one of thousands of British sailors who ran the blockade of Confederate ports during the Civil War. They crewed some of the finest steamships built in the shipyards of Glasgow and Liverpool. Britain remained neutral during the war—so why were so many British vessels used, and what was the motivation for the British sailors to head toward the conflict? Author John F. Messner will describe the blockade and explore the story of how one such British mariner came to command one of the most successful runners of the war. Joining him are Vann Evans, audiovisual materials archivist at the State Archives of North Carolina, and Civil War blockade historian Stephen Wise. They will discuss the role that Britain had in America’s greatest conflict and the archival sources, both in the US and UK, that were used to discover Wyllie’s story.

All events listed in the calendar are free unless noted.