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[212] by the President, he was not conscious that his signature would deprive me of the means to accomplish an object which he held to be of vital importance.

In a letter from him, which is annexed, he hastened to affirm that “the attempt” to provision Fort Sumter had advanced the cause of the country.

The tug Freeborn was not permitted to leave New-York. The tug Uncle Ben was driven into Wilmington by the violence of the gale, and subsequently captured by the rebels. The tug Yankee reached Charleston bar a few hours after the Baltic had left with Major Anderson's command on board.

The communications between New-York and Washington having been severed, I applied to Mr. Aspinwall to obtain for me a small steamer with arms and ammunition to enable me to reach the Chesapeake Bay, where I judged that armed steamers were very essential. This gentleman applied to Mr. William B. Astor, who very generously gave him a check for five thousand dollars. With this he procured the tug Yankee, and persuaded Commodore Breese, commandant of the New-York Navy-Yard, to arm and fit her out; and having received from that officer an appointment as Acting Lieutenant in the Navy, I left on the twenty-sixth for Hampton Roads, where I reported to Commodore Pendergrast, of the Cumberland.

The services of the Yankee not being required at this point, I proceeded to Annapolis, and offered my vessel to General Butler, who was about opening communications with Washington. The General gratefully received the steamer, and sent me through to the capital to report to the President, and immediately afterward I received an appointment in the Navy Department.

Annexed are copies of orders and letters relating to the narrative which I have submitted. Very respectfully yours,

G. V. Fox, Assistant Secretary of the Navy.

February 8, 1861.
Lieutenant-General Winfield Scott, United States Army:
sir: The proposition which I had the honor to submit to you fully, in person, is herewith presented in writing. Lieutenant Hall and myself have had several free conferences, and if he is permitted by the South-Carolina authorities to renter Fort Sumter, Major Anderson will comprehend the plan for his relief. I consider myself very fortunate in having proposed a project which meets the approval of the General-in-Chief, and I ask no reward but the entire conduct of the part, exclusive of the armed vessels. The commander of these should be ordered to cooperate with me by affording protection and destroying their naval preparations near the bar, leaving to me, as the author of the plan, the actual operations of relief.

I suggest that the Pawnee be immediately sent to the Delaware breakwater to await orders, the Harriet Lane to be ready for sea, and some arrangement entered into by which the requisite steamer and tugs should be engaged, at least so far as not to excite suspicion. I should prefer one of the Collins steamers. They are now being prepared for sea, and are of such a size and power as to be able fearlessly to run down any vessels which might attempt to capture us outside by coup de main. I could quietly engage one and have her ready to start on twenty-four hours notice, without exciting suspicion. I shall leave for New-York at three P. M., and any communications previous will find me at Judge Blair's. If the Pawnee's pivot-gun is landed, it should certainly be remounted.

Very respectfully, etc.,

Headquarters of the army, Washington, March 19, 1861.
dear sir: In accordance with the request contained in a note from the Secretary of War to me, of which I annex a copy, I request that you will have the goodness to proceed to Charleston, S. C., and obtain permission, “if necessary,” to visit Fort Sumter, in order to enable you to comply with the wish expressed in the Secretary's note. Please, on your return, to report accordingly.

I remain yours, etc.,

Executive Mansion, Washington, April 1, 1861.
Lieutenant D. D. Porter will take command of the steamer Powhatan, or any other United States steamer ready for sea which he may deem most fit for the service to which he has been assigned by confidential instructions of this date.

All officers are commanded to afford him all such facilities as he may deem necessary for getting to sea as soon as possible.

He will select the officers to accompany him.

Executive Mansion, April 1, 1861.
Lieutenant D. D. Porter, United States Navy:
sir: You will proceed to New-York, and with the least possible delay, assuming command of any naval steamer available, proceed to Pensacola harbor, and at any cost or risk prevent any expedition from the main land reaching Fort Pickens or Santa Rosa Island.

You will exhibit this order to any naval officer at Pensacola, if you deem it necessary, after you have established yourself within the harbor, and will request cooperation by the entrance of at least one other steamer.

This order, its object, and your destination will be communicated to no person whatever until you reach the harbor of Pensacola.

Washington, Executive Mansion, April 1, 1861.
all officers of the army and navy to whom this order may be exhibited will aid by every means in their power the expedition under the

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