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[298] trips from Bermuda to Wilmington, and was then fitted out as a commerce-destroyer, being renamed the Tallahassee and put under the command of Commander John Taylor Wood. She set out from Wilmington in August. A successful three weeks cruise extended as far as Halifax; nearly thirty coasting and fishing vessels were destroyed. In October, she became the Olustee and took seven prizes. This ended her career as a cruiser, for there was now more pressing work for her to do. Once more she became a blockade-runner, and, as the Chameleon, went to Bermuda with a cargo of cotton. Bringing back much needed supplies for Lee's army, she was unable, in January, 1865, to enter either Wilmington or Charleston, the only ports then in the hands of the Confederacy. So her captain was compelled to take her to Liverpool, where she was seized and delivered to the United States Government.

Beside the cruisers, the Confederate agents attempted to procure in Europe iron-clad vessels for the purpose of opening blockaded ports and navigating the shallow waters of the Mississippi and the Gulf. This was a most difficult matter, inasmuch as their character could not be disguised. Two ships were started in England, but the British Government seized the unfinished vessels and finally purchased them. The Confederate Government suffered no financial loss, but the blow to its prospects was severe.

John Slidell, the commissioner in France, finally got six war vessels started in that country, but all but one had to be abandoned. The latter, a light-draft iron-clad ram, after many strange adventures, including a purchase by the Danish Government, finally sailed at the end of January, 1865, for the Confederacy, under the name of the Stonewall. Stopping at Coruña, Spain, she was threatened by the United States warships Niagara and Sacramento. But Commodore Thomas T. Craven of the Niagara decided that the Stonewall in a fight “ought to be more than a match for three such ships as the Niagara,” and let her get away. When the ram reached

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