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[84] to operate up the Great Ogeechee, and capture, if he could, the fort at Genesis Point (known afterward as Fort McAllister), under cover of which was lying the Nashville, a large side-wheel steamer, a blockade-runner fitted for a cruiser under the Confederate flag, and there for the purpose of escaping to foreign waters. If Commander Worden should be successful against the fort, it was thought that the Nashville might be destroyed, and afterward a railroad bridge lying two miles above the fort.

Commander Worden reported his arrival off Ossabaw Bar on the 24th of January, in tow of the James Adger. He crossed the bar at 5 P. M. but had to anchor on account of fog, which also held him fast the following day. The commanding officers of the Seneca, Wissahickon, Dawn, and Williams were called together and instructions given as to the plan of attack on the fort. On the 26th the Montauk anchored just out of range, followed by the other vessels. After dark, Lieutenant-Commander John L. Davis, with two armed boats, went up the river to reconnoitre, and to destroy range marks placed by the enemy. He examined the line of piles driven across the river diagonally below the fort, and found indications that the piles supported torpedoes. At 7 A. M. the Montauk moved to a position about one hundred and fifty yards below this line of piles, and opened fire, and at the same time the other vessels moved into effective range for shells and opened also. The fort at first returned the fire briskly, with fair aim, striking the Montauk thirteen times without inflicting serious damage. Before noon the shells of the Montauk were expended and the vessel withdrew and by signal directed the withdrawal of the other vessels. No casualties occurred on board of any of the attacking force. The fort was found to mount nine guns and was provided with ample bomb-proofs.

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