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Admiral David D. Porter, The Naval History of the Civil War. 2 0 Browse Search
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Admiral David D. Porter, The Naval History of the Civil War., Chapter 39: Miscellaneous operations, land and sea.--operations in the Nansemond, Cape Fear, Pamunky, Chucka Tuck and James Rivers.--destruction of blockade-runners.--adventures of Lieutenant Cushing, etc. (search)
ats dragging for these infernal machines. There were three of these torpedo-pits, from which men were ready to act as soon as a vessel should get into the desired position; and it seems as though a few marines as skirmishers, marching along the banks, might have prevented any attempt of the enemy to operate the wires. In one of the pits two men were captured, ready to explode a torpedo should any vessel pass over it. These were Acting-Master P. W. Smith, of the Confederate navy, and Jeffries Johnson, private in the Submarine Corps. In those days such adventurers stood a chance of being shot as soon as captured, though now the case would be different. These men were quite communicative, and said they had adopted this service to remain near their homes. Some of their torpedoes would explode by contact, others by lines from the shore, and others by various ingenious contrivances. All of them could be put down in one day by a torpedo-boat arranged for the purpose by Lieutenant Davi