James Burns was circa 1838 in England and enlisted on 15 April 1864 at the Brooklyn, New York Naval Rendezvous as a Ordinary Seaman for a 3 year enlistment. He was an Army private who was transfered to the Navy.
Burns was sent to the U.S.S. Tecumseh on 20 April 1864 .
Burns was one of the survivors of the sinking of the Tecumseh on 5 August 1864. He was picked up from the water by Acting ENS Henry Clay Nields' cutter from the Metacomet .
Per his rendezvous index card, Burns was next attached to the U.S.S. Hartford and later the West Gulf Squadron and finally the U.S.S. Potomac. He was discharged from the Navy on 11 June 1866 at Boston.
Awards & Memorials
Alternate Spellings of Name
References and Sources Return of the United States Naval Rendezvous, Brooklyn, NY, for the week ending 16 April 1864
 NARA T1099. An index to rendezvous reports during the Civil War, 1861-1865.
"Report of Commander T. H. Stevens, United States Monitor Winnebago, August 6 1864" Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion: Series I, Volume 21 West Gulf Blockading Squadron from January 1 to December 31, 1864 (1906)