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Admiral David D. Porter, The Naval History of the Civil War., chapter 51 (search)
er government. There was in the latter part of 1864 a growing feeling in the Federal States against the action of Great Britain, which, though the latter began to pay more attention to its neutral obligations (owing to the strong protests of Mr. Adams, Federal minister at the Court of St. James), still allowed these cruisers to escape to sea; and several ironclad rams, built by John Laird & Co., were preparing for sea, at Liverpool. These rams would, no doubt, have escaped but for the earnethe course of construction, and the Federal Government had, apparently, realized at last the importance of having a powerful Navy, by which alone it could maintain its position among the nations of the earth. Mr. Seward's earnest letters and Mr. Adams' strong protests may have had some influence upon the British Government in deciding them to carry out the terms of their Foreign Enlistment Act, but there was a stronger argument in the heavy ships and guns that the Federals were building so r