Speed 10 k
Armament 1 12-pdr, 4 32-pdrs
The first Penguin, purchased at New York 23 May 1861, was commissioned 25 June 1861, Acting Volunteer Lt. Thomas A. Budd in command.
Assigned originally to the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron, Penguin joined the Potomac Flotilla, 19 August 1861. In October she shifted to the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron and in November participated in the capture of Forts Walker and Beauregard. Remaining with that squadron she assisted in the taking of Fernandina, Fla., 4 March 1862. On the 22nd, a boat crew from Penguin and Henry Andrew was attacked while reconnoitering Mosquito Inlet. In the ensuing engagement, Acting Lt. Budd and four others were killed.
Later shifted to the Gulf of Mexico, Penguin patrolled off the Texas coast. On 8 July 1864 she assisted in the destruction, near Galveston, of the blockade running steamer Matagorda and on 21 January 1865 she forced another, Granite City, ashore at Velasco. After the Civil War, Penguin returned to the east coast, decommissioned at Boston 24 August 1865 and was sold to Fogg and Co., 8 September 1865.