to come from Corunna
and without whom there could be no performance.
The dinner hour of the crew had come, while the Stonewall
“stood” on the line she had taken back and forth, her screws slowly revolving, seeming to think there was a screw loose in Corunna
The men had been at “quarters” --that is, at their several stations in time of action — for some hours since an early breakfast, sitting, standing, walking by the side of their respective guns, chatting in low tones among themselves as cheerfully as though they were going into some home port.
They ate their dinner at “quarters,” for the distance between the Stonewall
and her anxiously looked
was too short to admit of the usual formalities of a set dinner.
They imagined that after the settlement of the “slight unpleasantness,” should any of them happen to “turn up” alive, they would be invited to a more formal dinner on board of the Niagara
Thus passed the day, in hopeless anticipation.
The spectators on the mountain side had disappeared, and the Spanish frigate, seeing there would be no violation to Her Majesty's territory, had returned to Ferrol
, while the Stonewall
, at the close of the day, abandoning all hopes of meeting her fellow-travelers of the sea, for they evidently desired none of her company, stood on her course for Lisbon
It became necessary to “put into” this port, though so near, because the Stonewall
had taken on board in Ferrol
only a limited quantity of coals.
This was done in order to enable her to carry the “bow gun” as high as possible above the sea, and thereby be more efficient.
She conceived the chances of victory greatly against her, and that she would not require coals if captured or sent to the bottom.
Arrived in Lisbon
, and while in the act of taking on board a supply of coals, the Stonewall
was honored with an official visit, the object of which was to ascertain when she was going to sea. The tone and nervous manner accompanying this inquiry were strongly indicative of an earnest desire that she should leave the port without delay.
This Portuguese reception, in contrast with that of the Spanish
, was very striking.
The official was given to understand that the Stonewall
had availed herself of the hospitalities of Lisbon only
with the view of procuring coals, and that if he would kindly expedite the delivery of them on board she would hasten her departure.
The truth was the authorities on shore had received information of the sailing of the Niagara