men were detailed from the Seneca
, and a reserve of 30 men from the Patroon
, under the command of Lieutenant John G. Sproston
of the Seneca
The party landed at early daylight and proceeded rapidly to Huston's house.
A negro woman saw the party and gave the alarm.
appeared at the door armed with a double-barrelled gun, two pistols and a bowie knife; to a demand to surrender he fired a pistol at Sproston
within a few feet, killing him instantly.
He fired the other pistol and the gun, wounding a sailor slightly, and was shot and bayonetted at the same time; he was brought on board and died within a day or two, his wounds being necessarily fatal.
The party not having been thrown around the house, several persons escaped who had fired from it without effect.
The death of this officer was a loss to the navy, and was deeply regretted by his many friends in and out of the service.
He was a gallant officer of great professional merit, and had with others, on the 13th of September, 1861, distinguished himself in the destruction of the privateer Judah
at the Pensacola Navy Yard
; and afterward as executive officer of the Seneca
in the battle of Port Royal
, and on other occasions.
While in those waters the Seneca
recovered two fieldpieces and carriages at a creek below Yellow Bluffs.
It was known that a certain Neils Johnson
had been present in throwing them into the water, and he was sent for. He acted the simpleton, but he was informed that his feigned stupidity would not answer, and that he would be held as a prisoner until he aided in the recovery of the guns.
He no longer feigned, but wept earnestly and said he could not do so, as the ‘Regulators’ would kill him. A compromise was effected, resulting in the recovery of the guns, upon his being given a paper stating that he aided under penalty of otherwise being shot.
At Yellow Bluffs, before this occurrence,