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[234] themselves for many months. The Ironsides went into dry-dock for repairs.

The attack also suggested to officers of the United States Navy that this was a game which both sides could play at, and Lieutenant Cushing bravely availed himself of it. I congratulate him for the eclat and promotion he obtained thereby. I do not remember the date of my exchange again as a prisoner of war, but it was only in time to witness the painful agonies and downfall of an exhausted people, and the surrender of a hopeless cause.

I was authorized to equip and command any number of torpedo boats, but it was now too late. I made efforts to do what I could at Charleston, till it became necessary to abandon that city. I then commanded the iron-clad “Fredericksburg” on James river, until ordered by Admiral Semmes to burn and blow her up when Richmond was evacuated. Leaving Richmond with the admiral, we now organized the First Naval Artillery Brigade, and I was in command of a regiment of sailors when informed that our noble old General, R. E. Lee, had capitulated. Our struggle was ended.

All that is now passed, and our duty remains to meet the necessities of the future. After the close of the war I was offered a command and high rank under a foreign flag. I declined the compliment and recommended my gallant old commander, Commodore J. R. Tucker, as one more worthy and competent than myself to fill a high position.

In conclusion let me say: I have never regretted that I acted in accordance with what appeared to be my duty. I was actuated by no motive of self-interest, and never entertained a feeling of hatred or personal enmity against those who were my honorable opponents. I have asked for no pardon, which might imply an acknowledgment that I had been either traitor or rebel. No amnesty has been extended to me.

Bear in mind, loyal reader, these facts: I had been absent nearly two years. No one could have lamented the beginning of the war more than I did. It had been in progress nearly six months when I came home from sea. I had taken no part in it, when on my arrival in Philadelphia, only because I could not truthfully swear that I felt no human sympathy for my own family and for the friends of my childhood, and that I was willing to shed their blood and desolate their homes; and because I would not take an

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