such of them as did not belong to the army were under the orders of Commander John K. Mitchell
, C. S. N.
They were the Louisiana
, sixteen guns, Commander Charles F. McIntosh
, eight guns, Lieutenant Thomas B. Huger
, ten guns, Lieutenant F. B. Renshaw
, Lieutenant A. F. Warley
, and ten launches.
There were two State gunboats: Governor Moore
, two guns, Lieutenant Beverly Kennon
, and Governor Quitman
, two guns, Captain Alexander Grant
Besides these there were six of the so-called River Defense Fleet--the Warrior, Stonewall Jackson, Defence, Resolute, General Lovell
, and R. J. Breckinridge
--river steamers with bows strengthened for ramming purposes, all but one of which carried a single small smooth-bore gun. They really belonged to the army, and Captain John A. Stephenson
was in command.
A few unarmed tugs, belonging to the army and navy, were also on hand.
This force, if properly officered and manned, might have been quite formidable, but Commander Mitchell
, who took charge only a few days before the battle, had practically only four vessels and twelve guns at his disposal, for the Jackson
had gone up the river and the Louisiana
was scarcely able to move.
The River Defense Fleet proved a failure, for, as General Lovell
has said, “their total want of system, vigilance, and discipline rendered them useless and helpless.”
's instructions had been so minute that it seemed that he had overlooked no possibility in the way of accident.
That he expected the most desperate resistance and well understood what lay before him, is proved by the conclusion to his general orders for the preparation of the individual ships:
I wish you to understand that the day is at hand when you will be called upon to meet the enemy in the worst form for our profession.
You must be prepared to execute all those duties to which you have been so long trained in the navy, without having the opportunity of practising.
I expect every vessel's crew to be well exercised at their guns, because it is required by the regulations of the service, and it is usually