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Admiral David D. Porter, The Naval History of the Civil War., Chapter 35: operations of the North Atlantic Squadron, 1863. (search)
ly employed. It was not a very brilliant service, but it was a useful one. Without it the Confederates would have seriously harassed the important Army posts, and driven in the smaller ones. They dreaded those frail vessels, with their heavy guns and fearless seamen, and a gun-boat was often worth more to the Army than two or three stout regiments. The last act chronicled in the records of the North Atlantic squadron for this year is the destruction of the blockade-runner Venus. on October 21st. The Venus was from Nassau, bound to Wilmington, and, while attempting to run the blockade, was chased by the steamer Nansemond, Lieutenant Lamson, and overtaken. As the chase did not comply with his orders to heave-to, Lieutenant Lamson opened fire upon her. One shot struck her foremast, another exploded in her ward-room, a third passed through the funnel and killed one man, and a fourth, striking an iron plate near the water line, caused her to leak so badly that it was necessary to
Admiral David D. Porter, The Naval History of the Civil War., chapter 48 (search)
not going to protect the property of its subjects on the high seas as long as an American flag waved upon the ocean. With all her great Navy, Her Britannic Majesty had not a vessel on the ocean looking after the proceedings of these Confederate cruisers, while quite a number of them were employed in watching the operations of the Federal Navy on the coast, and officiously inspecting the blockade, to see that it was lawfully maintained. The Alabama made her sixteenth capture on the 21st of October: a fine large ship running down to her — the fly and the spider again — looking a perfect picture, with her sails all beautifully drawing, and her masts swaying and bending under the cloud of canvas, while the sea was rolling before her broad, flaring bows as if nothing could oppose her progress. It was a beautiful sight, this almost living sign of a nation's greatness, that could boast at that time that the white sails of her ships covered every sea. But a little puff of smoke from th