Louis Malesherbes Goldsborough (1805-1877)

Louis Malesherbes Goldsborough (February 18, 1805-February 20, 1877) was an admiral in the United States Navy who served during the early 1800s.

Born in Washington, D.C, Goldsborough was appointed midshipman in the United States Navy by Secretary of the Navy Paul Hamilton on June 28, 1812, at the age of seven. Goldsborough did not actually serve until February 13, 1816, when he reported for duty at the Washington Navy Yard.

He led a four-boat night expedition from Porpoise in September 1827 to rescue British merchant brig Comet from Mediterranean pirates. In 1830 he was appointed first officer in charge of the newly created Depot of Charts and Instruments at Washington, the rude beginning of the United States Hydrographic Office. Goldsborough suggested creation of the depot and initiated the collection and centralization of the instruments, books and charts that were scattered among several Navy yards. After 2 years he was relieved by Lieutenant Charles Wilkes.

Goldsborough led German emigrants to Wirt's Estates near Monticello, Florida in 1833. He then took leave from the Navy to command a steamboat expedition and later mounted volunteers in the Seminole War.

After cruising the Pacific in the frigate United States, he participated in the bombardment of Veracruz in Ohio during the Mexican-American War. He served consecutively as: commander of a detachment in the expedition against Tuxpan; senior officer of a commission which explored California and Oregon (1849-1850); superintendent of the United States Naval Academy (1853-1857); and commander of the Brazil Squadron (1859-1861).

During his command of the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron from October 1861 to September 1862, he led his fleet off North Carolina, where in cooperation with troops under General Ambrose Burnside, he captured Roanoke Island and destroyed a small Confederate fleet.

After special administrative duties in Washington, D.C., he took command of the European Squadron in the last year of the U.S. Civil War, returning to Washington in 1868 to serve as commander of the Washington Navy Yard until his retirement in 1873.

Rear Admiral Goldsborough died on February 20, 1877. The United States Navy has named three ships USS Goldsborough in honor of Admiral Goldsborough.