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USS Powhatan was a United States Navy sidewheel steam frigate.
- Tonnage: 2,415 tons
- Cost: $785,000
- Max Speed: 11 knots
- Cruise Speed: 8 knots
- Armament: 5 x 12 pounders; 1 x 11 pounder; 10 x 9 pounder
- Dimensions: 253 feet x 45 feet x 18.5 feet
- Engine: 1500 horsepower steam w/sidewheels
- Hull: wooden
She was initially assigned as flagship of the Home Squadron and served in that capacity for two years.
During the period 1852 to 1854 Powhatan served in the East India Squadron. She was a participant in Commodore Matthew Perry's expedition to Japan. The Treaty of Kanagawa was signed on her deck on 31 March 1854.
In 1857 the Powhatan joined the West Indies Squadron.
The Powhatan served during the American Civil War. In 1861 under the command of Lieutenant David Dixon Porter she took part in the relief of Fort Pickens, Florida and assisted in establishing blockades off of Mobile, Alabama and the Gulf coast of Mississippi.
In the winter of 1864 she took part in the reduction of Fort Fisher, North Carolina.