reached by a step-ladder from the gun-deck. The second shot from the Weehawken, although it was a glancing one, wrenched off this look-out and smashed in the cone. From this pilot-house were seven speaking-tubes connecting with their appropriate rooms below, and all properly lettered and numbered, so that the man at the wheel can readily communicate with those below. Her length from bow to stern-post is a small fraction over three hundred feet. The gun-deck covering is at its base two hundred feet long and forty feet in width, and at its top one hundred feet in length by fourteen feet in breadth. You will thus see that her roof does not slope all the way up, but has a very respectable top-deck. From the gun-deck to the roof the perpendicular height is six feet, and the sides of the roof sloping at an angle of forty-five degrees, the standing height is eight feet. The lower edge of the roof is twenty inches above water-mark, so that she stands above the water about eight feet. From her aft roof edge it is fifty feet to the stern-post, and from her fore roof edge it is also fifty feet to her bow. The distance from her gun-deck to her keel is sixteen feet and a fraction over. Her steering apparatus is perfect and her rudder completely submerged in the water, thereby being in the safest place imaginable. Her iron-plating extends two feet below the water-line. It is evident that the rebels have taught us a good lesson on the torpedo subject, as connected with iron-clads, from which we may well afford to learn. It has been a question how a torpedo could be safely carried in front of a vessel without interfering with its steering and other movements, and be at the same time secure from explosion until the proper time. The Atlanta's torpedo gearing solves the question. The forward part of the ram of the Atlanta is solid iron, twenty feet in length, and so overlaid by steel bars, with their ends protruding below the cut-water that a huge steel saw is formed, which would cut any wooden gun-boat in existence. This ram at its bow-end comes to a point, if I may so call it, about two inches square. From the deck of this iron ram, just ahead of its juncture with the vessel, arises a strong iron bar with a pivot at its top, to which is attached a massive iron boom which runs just over the ram's prow, and then forming an elbow, it descends three feet below the water-line, where it forms another elbow, and then running out some two feet it forms at its end a powerful socket or ring. In this socket is firmly inserted another iron boom, which extends beyond the socket twenty-eight feet, and at its end is hung the torpedo, all capped and ready for the explosion. From this cap runs an insulated wire along the boom and ending in the pilot-house, where are the necessary electrical arrangements with which the pilot could explode the torpedo as soon as it was run under a vessel. You can hardly conceive of a more perfect or efficient engine of destruction than such a torpedo, and thus carried. The iron ram also is savage enough in its appearance, and would saw a hole in a wooden vessel without much difficulty. Such is but a feeble description of the rebel ram Atlanta, which Captain John Rodgers has the honor to present to the Government. She is certainly superior, in many respects, to any ram which has yet been built; and, as Webb said, if she had not run aground, the result would have been different. She is a very fast vessel. When she came into the harbor, yesterday, she was making, in a heavy sea, seven knots an hour; and our officers, as well as her own, say that she can, under full speed and in ordinary weather, make eleven knots easily. This speed is much greater than that of any of our monitors, and she might, if she had not run aground, steamed away from them, defying pursuit. As it was, Providence interfered in our behalf, and the Atlanta, immovable in the mud, became an easy prey. It was a remarkably short engagement; only nine shots in all being fired-five by the Weehawken, and four by the Atlanta. The Nahant did not get up to the scene of action until the surrender had been made, so that, much to the regret of Commodore Downes, he was not able to contribute in a positive manner to the victory, although he made every endeavor to bring the Nahant up into action. Admiral Du Pont pronounces the Atlanta the most perfect iron-clad, with the exception of her penetrability, that he has ever seen, and she is certainly the most valuable prize taken by our navy during the war. Her loss, also, to the rebels is as severe as that of the Merrimac, which she resembles very much, both in her appearance and construction, although she has many improvements upon the old terror of Hampton Roads. By this victory Captain Rodgers has endeared himself more than ever to a loyal and anxious people, and I cannot close this letter without expressing a desire, that I know will be cordially responded to throughout the North--long life and success to Captain Rodgers, and the valiant crew of the Weehawken.
Providence Journal account.
Port Royal, S. C., June 17, 1863.The work commenced so well in this section in the burning of the Nashville by the Montauk, in February last, has been continued by the ironclad Weehawken. The routine of affairs in this harbor was somewhat disturbed this morning by the reception of news from shore to the flag-ship Wabash, through the signal code, that the Weehawken had captured the rebel iron-clad steamer and ram Atlanta, in Warsaw Sound, and that the officers and men of the rebel ram would soon be in Port Royal. Captures and rumors of captures are so much in vogue in these latter days that we hardly knew how much confidence to have in the aforesaid despatch, and yet, inasmuch as it came to the flag-ship in so legitimate a manner, we thought it must indeed be true, and a few hours brought “confirmations strong as proofs of holy writ.” You remember the Atlanta (originally the Anglo-rebel blockade-runner Fingal) came into Savannah last spring, with an immensely valuable