Bering Sea Squadron

Bering Sea Squadron

USS Mohican was the flagship of the Bering Sea Squadron.
Active 1891
Country  United States
 United Kingdom
Branch United States Navy
United Kingdom Royal Navy
Type naval squadron

The Bering Sea Squadron was a combined American and British naval station formed and disbanded in 1891 to suppress seal poaching in the Bering Sea. Eleven vessels were assigned to the squadron including eight United States Navy and Revenue Cutter Service ships plus three from the Royal Navy.[1]

Anti-Poaching Operations

The United States and United Kingdom government banned sealing in the Bering Sea in 1891 due to the near extinction of the animals so that year Commander Charles S. Cotton of the American navy was ordered to lead a force of two sloops, USS Mohican and USS Marion, two steamers, USS Thetis and SS Al-Ki, plus the gunboats USS Alert and USS Ranger to operate against poachers. The revenue cutters USRC Rush and USRC Corwin were also placed under Cotton's command. British forces sent the cruiser HMS Porpoise, the screw sloop HMS Nymphe and the steamer HMS Pheasant. From the beginning of the operation on June 22, 1891 to its end on October 5, American and British marines boarded and expelled dozens of merchant vessels mainly around the Aleutian Islands though only four schooners were found to be hunting seals illegally. Two of these vessels were taken over by marines and towed over 1,200 miles by the Al-Ki to Sitka, the other two were taken into British custody and sent to Asia.[2]

Ships of the Squadron

Ship Type Branch
Mohican screw sloop-of-war USN
Marion sloop-of-war USN
Alert gunboat USN
Ranger gunboat USN
Thetis steamer USN
Al-Ki steamer USN
Rush cutter USRCS
Corwin cutter USRCS
Porpoise cruiser RN
Nymphe screw sloop-of-war RN
Pheasant steamer RN


  1. Harry Allanson Ellsworth, pg. 14-15
  2. Harry Allanson Ellsworth, pg. 14-15

This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.

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