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[96] answered.1 The malevolent folly of the municipal authorities served only to expose their city to destruction. A force landed from the Pensacola had hoisted, unopposed, a Federal flag over the Mint, and left it there unguarded. Ere it had thus remained many hours, a number of young Rebels mounted to the dome, tore it down, and dragged it through the streets. It would have been entirely justifiable and proper on the part of Farragut to have required of the authorities its immediate and respectful replacement, on penalty of the destruction of their city; but he forbore; and, even when he required them, two days afterward, to take down the flag of Louisiana, still floating over the City Hall, the Mayor positively refused. Capt. F. finally closed2 the absurd altercation by sending a force from his ships to take down the flag: a vast crowd looking sullenly on, or giving vent to their wrath only in idle curses. They failed to comprehend their position; but they respected the two brass howitzers, well manned and supported, which stood in front of the City Hall while the operation was quietly and thoroughly performed.

Capt. Farragut had not waited to obtain formal possession of the city before moving up3 to the two forts at Carrollton, eight miles above, where lie was surprised to find the gun-carriages on fire and the guns spiked. The works were formidable, but constructed to resist an advance from above; so that, being taken in reverse, they had been adjudged indefensible.

Gen. Butler, having witnessed from


U. S. Flag-Ship Hartford, at anchor
off the city of New Orleans,
April 28, 1862.
To His Honor the Mayor and City Council of the City of New Orleans:
Your communication of the 26th inst. has been received, together with that of the City Council.

I deeply regret to see, both by their contents and the continued display of the flag of . Louisiana on the Court-House, a determination on the part of the city authorities not to haul it down. Moreover, when my officers and men were sent on shore to communicate with the authorities, arid to hoist the United States flag on the Custom-House, with the strictest order not to use their arms unless assailed, they were insulted in the grossest manner, and the flag which had been hoisted by my orders on the Mint was pulled down and dragged through the streets. All of which goes to show that the fire of this fleet may be drawn upon the city at any moment; and in such an event the levee would, in all probability, be cut by the shells, and an amount of distress ensue to tie innocent population which I have hitherto endeavored to assure you that I desire by all means to avoid.

The election. therefore, is with you. But it becomes my duty to notify you to remove the women and children from the city within 48 hours, if I rightly understand your determination.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


D. G. Farragut, Flag-Officer Western Gulf Blockading Squadrou.

It seems incredible, yet it is a fact, that Monroe sent a rejoinder to this letter; in which, amid bombastic and turgid babble about flagrant violation of those courtesies which prevail between belligerents, and shells tearing up the graves of those who are so dear to them, he whimpered out: “Our women and children cannot escape, from your shells, if it be your pleasure to murder them on a question of mere etiquette.” Even Pollard barely represses his disgust at the silly repetitions and vanity of literary style protruded by tins Bobadil of a Mayor.

2 May 1.

3 Afternoor of April 26.

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