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Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 20. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), chapter 1.1 (search)
ly executed the movement of turning, seeing the fate of the Cumberland, slipped her cable, loosed her foretop sail, ran up her jib, and, with the assistance of the tug-boat Zouave, either endeavored to escape or to get into shoal water, but in doing so grounded, head inshore, in which position she could bring only her stern guns into action. The Merrimac having by this time headed round, and being in position, about two hundred yards astern of the Congress, with the Beaufort, Raleigh and James-river fleet, concentrated a most destructive fire upon her. Having already suffered much loss and damage from our shot and shell with no possible hope of succor, her commander (Lieutenant Joseph B. Smith having been killed, and each moment adding to the already large number of killed and wounded), Lieutenant Pendergrast, most wisely, about 4 P. M. ran up a white flag at the fore and main masts in token of surrender. Upon seeing this, the Beaufort being then close in action lowered a boat and