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[196] Dacotah, one of the blockading vessels. It was supposed that the blockader was aground, but when the Monticello and Dacotah went in and opened on her she moved up the river. The vessels were opened on from Fort Caswell, mortally wounding Master's Mate Henry Baker on board of the Monticello.

At daylight on the morning of March 14th a large Confederate force attacked Fort Anderson (opposite Newbern, N. C.), on the river Neuse. It was an unfinished work, garrisoned by 300 men. Its defence was aided by the gunboats Hetzel and Hunchback, and some guns on a schooner. The enemy evidently was informed as to the contents of a telegram, and counted upon a literal compliance with the request of General Foster, made four days previously, ‘to send all the light gunboats to aid the expedition to Hyde County.’ The enemy supposed all had gone and made his first attack here.1 He opened on the fort from a two-gun battery on the south bank, and on the Hunchback and the schooner. Those vessels commanded the point and its approach, and the Hetzel enfiladed from below. The latter vessel, as well as the Shawsheen, were undergoing repairs and had to be towed into position.

At six o'clock the firing ceased, ‘when signals from the fort said that the enemy gave them thirty minutes in which to surrender.’ This demand was made, it was supposed, to get fourteen pieces of artillery into position. At 6.30 this battery, within two hundred and fifty yards of the fort, opened upon it again, and the two-gun battery on the opposite shore fired on the Hunchback and the schooner. The action was very fierce for thirty minutes, when the Hetzel in tow of a tug got into position ‘and threw Ix-inch shells ’

1 Murray's Report.

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