The Alarm was authorized by an act of Congress, appropriating three hundred thousand dollars to build two Torpedo boats. Secretary Robeson put one under the charge of the Admiral of the Navy, who designed the Alarm; the other was put under charge of the Chief of Bureau of Construction, Isaiah Hanscom, who designed the Intrepid.
The U.S.S. Alarm
Born in Western Virginia in 1845. Appointed from that section by his uncle, Hon. William G. Brown; entered Naval School at Newport, July, 1864; graduated, June, 1868, number three in a class of eighty; served as Midshipman on North Pacific Station, on board of Saranac, Lackawanna, and Pensacola. Promoted to Ensign, 1869; to Master, 1870; sailed from New York, on the Alaska, in April, 1870, for China; made a three years’ cruise in that vessel; took part in the Korean Expedition; commanding the sailors landed as infantry from that ship; was in the final charge at Fort McKee, and was mentioned in the official reports of the action as among those first in the fort; ordered as second lieutenant to the New Hampshire, at Norfolk, in October, 1873; served there until June, 1874, when he was ordered to Torpedo School at Newport; in October of same year was ordered as first lieutenant of the Despatch; ordered to Swatara, June, 1875; served on Home Squadron until March, 1877, when he was ordered to the Naval Academy as Instructor of Navigation and Surveying. Commissioned as Lieutenant, April 13, 1872; appointed Lieutenant Commander, 27 April 1893; Retired, 5 December 1894. Died 14 December 1906.