Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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ALDEN, James, naval officer, born in Portland, Maine, 31 March 1810; died in San Francisco, California, 6 February 1877. He was appointed midshipman in 1828, and in that capacity accompanied the Wilkes exploring expedition around the world in 1838-'42. He was commissioned lieutenant in 1841, and served during the Mexican war, being present at the capture of Vera Cruz, Tuxpan, and Tabasco. In 1855-'56 he was actively engaged in the Indian war on Puget's sound. At the outbreak of the civil war he was in command of the steamer "South Carolina," reinforced Fort Pickens, Fla., and was in an engagement at Galveston, Texas. He commanded the sloop of war "Richmond" at the passage of forts Jackson and St. Philip and the capture of New Orleans (April 1862), and was also at Port Hudson. He was made captain in 1863, and commanded the "Brooklyn," participating in the capture of Mobile bay (August 1864) and in the two attacks on Fort Fisher. He was commissioned commodore in 1866, and two years later was placed in charge of the navy yard at Mare Island, California. In 1869 he was appointed chief of the bureau of navigation and detail in the navy department. He was promoted to the rank of rear admiral in 1871, and assigned command of the European squadron.
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