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Model of ironclad warship CSS Virginia. CSS Virginia was the first ironclad warship built by the Confederate States Navy during the American Civil War. She was built on the carcass of the US Navy frigate USS Merrimack and commissioned in 1862. She engaged with the Union's ironclad vessel USS Monitor at the Battle of Hampton Roads, Virginia, 9th March 1862. This episode was the first meeting in combat of ironclad warships and signalled the end of the era of wooden ships. Although the confrontation was inconclusive, with neither ship able to sink the other after three hours of exchanging fire, the Monitor prevented the Virginia from gaining control of Hampton Roads and thus preserved the Union's blockade of the area.
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