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[219] Boston, was appointed, in April, to proceed to England to purchase arms. Mr. Crowninshield discharged the important trust confided to him with great fidelity, and to the satisfaction of the Governor. It may be interesting to learn, from so intelligent a party, the state of feeling in England towards this country in the beginning of the war.

Mr. Crowninshield arrived in London on Sunday morning, the sixth day of May. He found, on his arrival, that there were a very few rifles for sale in England. The ‘Persia,’ the steamer in which he was a passenger, had taken out many orders to purchase. He found an agent there from South Carolina, to purchase arms for that State. New York had also sent out an agent in the same ship with him; but he did not know the fact until after his arrival in England. There were also several private speculators in the ship for the purchase of arms. Many telegrams were sent from Queenstown to England, on the arrival of the ‘Persia’ at that port. The London Times, the morning on which Mr. Crowninshield arrived in that city, contained the announcement that agents had come over to purchase rifles, which caused great excitement in the trade.

On arriving at Liverpool, Mr. McFarland, who had been employed to go with Mr. Crowninshield, was despatched to Birmingham, and directed to act promptly in the purchase of arms, if he found any there suitable for our purpose. John B. Goodman, the chairman of the gun trade in Birmingham, had the control of about twenty-five thousand Enfield rifles, of excellent quality, which could be delivered in a very short time. The current price for these arms was sixty shillings sterling each; a party stood ready to give one hundred shillings each for the lot to go South. The preference of purchase was given to Mr. Crowninshield, and he purchased two thousand of them at that price. One thousand of them were to be sent in the ‘Persia,’ on her return voyage. In London, he purchased two thousand eight hundred, at seventy shillings each; he also purchased two hundred from the London Armory, at sixty-five shillings each.

The New-York agent purchased about the same number, and contracted for about fifteen thousand more; he also contracted for five thousand second-hand rifles, used in the Crimea. The

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