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[97] to ‘disregard motions of flag ship,’ he followed the Catskill. When within seven hundred and fifty yards of Sumter he opened fire on it, and for forty-five or fifty minutes was under the fire of three forts, which he describes as ‘terrific.’ The effect of the fire of the vessel on the fort was not so observable as that of the enemy on the vessel. After the third discharge the port stopper of the Xv-inch gun was jammed, several heavy shot having driven in the plating. The Xi-inch gun was fired twelve times. The vessel was struck fifty-one times. During the action the turret was jammed; six or seven nut-heads driven off had fallen inside and rendered it necessary to key up the turret to enable it to revolve.

A number of side-plates were started, so that another shot would probably have broken them off. One rifle-shot was driven through the armor into the wood, and one deck-plate was started from a blow on the side armor. Other serious injuries were named.

The Nahant reports that, following in line of battle, the vessel became hotly engaged. She soon began to suffer from the terrible fire to which she was subjected. At 4.30 the turret, having become jammed from the effects of three shots, refused to turn. One of these shot broke off a piece of iron in the interior weighing seventy-eight pounds, and throwing it violently across the house bent and disarranged the steering gear. Bolt-heads (nuts from the bolts) flying from the inside of the pilot-house struck down the pilot, and fatally injured the helmsman. The commanding officer was the only person in the pilot-house not senseless from injuries. The preventer steering gear was got in working order, and after repeated futile efforts to train the guns on Sumter, the vessel was headed out, the other vessels withdrawing under signal at the same time.

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Nahant (Massachusetts, United States) (1)
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