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Admiral David D. Porter, The Naval History of the Civil War., Chapter 27: expedition through Steele's Bayou and Deer Creek. (search)
A few days before this council, Admiral Farragut. who had come up from Red River, as before mentioned, requested Colonel Alfred Ellet to let him have two of the Ram fleet (to run the batteries at night) for the purpose of returning with him to the blockade of the Red River — saying he would make it all right with Admiral Porter, etc. To this Colonel Ellet at once agreed. Accordingly the rams Lancaster and Switzerland were prepared to run the batteries, the former commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel John A. Ellet, the latter by Charles Rivers Ellet. These Ellets were all brave fellows, and were full of the spirit of adventure. Instead of going past the batteries with comparative ease at night, they chose a time near daylight, and by the time they got abreast of the city all the batteries opened on them. The Lancaster's boilers were exploded by a shell, and being a frail vessel, she went to pieces and sunk immediately. The Switzerland had her boilers perforated by a plunging shot, and