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Admiral David D. Porter, The Naval History of the Civil War., Chapter 45: the cruise of the Sumter and the havoc she committed. (search)
pe in the Sumter was a bold and dashing adventure. Great latitude had been given Semmes in his instructions, and his plan was to make a cruise upon the coast of Cuba, destroy all American shipping he could meet with in that quarter, coal at some convenient point, and finally proceed to Brazil. Accordingly, the Sumter steamed along the coast of Cuba, in the direct track of vessels bound for the Gulf, and while between the coast and the Isle of Pines two sail were reported in sight, both standing in the same direction with the Confederate. When within signal distance, the British ensign was displayed by the latter, and the nearest vessel proving to be are waging an aggressive and unjust war upon the Confederate States, which I have the honor with this ship under my command to represent. I have sought a port of Cuba with these prizes, with the expectation that Spain will extend to the cruisers of the Confederate States the same friendly reception that, in similar circumstances
Admiral David D. Porter, The Naval History of the Civil War., chapter 48 (search)
ll carried him through the dreadful ordeal, and the doom of the Florida was not yet sealed. When he and most of his crew were convalescent, the Captain-General of Cuba sent a message to request the commander of the Florida to proceed to Havana, on the ground (it is asserted) that his vessel would be safe from an attack of Federalhe war where a Confederate cruiser was molested in neutral waters. In fact, there was such an absence of Federal gun-boats all along the Bahama banks and coast of Cuba, from the time the Florida first appeared in Nassau up to the time of her leaving Havana, that it was the cause of severe and well deserved strictures upon the neg as her greatest speed during the chase only 12 1/2 knots. although she had previously made 14. At night the Florida changed her course, and ran for the coast of Cuba, where she was engaged in burning prizes the next day, while the Cuyler was hunting for her in the Yucatan Channel. On the day after the Florida ran out, the On