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[206] Trumpeter and kept out of the range of the guns of the Albemarle.

It appears that as soon as the commanding officer of the Albemarle became aware of the force with which he had to contend, he despatched the Cotton Plant to a place of refuge, with her scows in tow, and made a face of advance for a time with the Bombshell. At 3.10 the squadron was fairly under way, and in position in two columns, line ahead, or the column of small vessels was soon after completed, as the squadron advanced to meet the Albemarle. At 4.20 the Miami, then heading the line of the port (left) column, advancing, made signal ‘Enemy is retreating.’ No other report mentions the fact that the Albemarle was in retreat when the vessels were advancing to make the attack.

The attacking vessels by their superior speed were coming up with the Albemarle. At 4.40 that vessel opened fire on the Mattabesett, leading the right column. The shell wounded several of a gun's crew and destroyed the launch. This was soon followed by another, doing less damage. The Albemarle had the general construction described in the ram Atlanta, and was armed with two 100-pounder rifles, one a Brooke, the other a Whitworth. These guns could pivot on either side, or ahead and astern.

The Mattabesett and vessels in line continued their advance; the Albemarle then put her helm aport, ‘with an evident intention to ram the Mattabesett;’ that vessel put her helm astarboard to avoid being run into, and that threw the antagonists farther apart than intended by the last named. At 4.45, when a little abaft the port beam of the Albemarle, the Mattabesett delivered her broadside of two rifled guns and four Ix-inch guns at a distance of one hundred and fifty yards from the Albemarle. At about the same time the

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