The chain was slipped and the men called to quarters; the boat was then under the port quarter and no gun could be brought to bear on her; a rapid fire of small arms was delivered into what looked like a hatchway near her centre; she dropped a short distance astern, and came up again immediately under the stern.
The propeller then revolving is supposed to have caught and broken the torpedo pole.
The boat then appeared disabled and drifted up the river.
An armed boat was sent to capture her, but the search was unsuccessful.
On the night of April 18th, the Wabash
, lying off Charleston
, was made the object of an unsuccessful attack.
At 9.45 P. M. a boat was discovered on the starboard quarter, one hundred and fifty yards distant, moving up rapidly against the tide until abeam; then she turned and moved directly for the ship.
The engines of the Wabash
were started ahead, the chain slipped and the starboard battery and small arms opened fire upon the boat.
Two round shot struck it, or near it when about forty yards distant from the vessel, and the boat was seen no more.
The vessel cruised around the spot with men at the guns and marines ready with small arms, and signal was made to the blockading vessels of proximity of danger, but the boat was not seen by any of them.
The enemy not only used torpedo-boats with some success, but in the adjacent waters fixed torpedoes, which exploded on contact.
By this means, in the St. John's River
, fifteen miles above Jacksonville
, on the 1st of April, the army transport Maple Leaf
was sunk; and on the 10th of May, below the city, the transport Weed
, and a third one later on. The navy steamer Harvest Moon
, nearly one year later, was sunk in the same manner below Georgetown
, and the Patapsco
(monitor), particularly described hereafter near Fort Sumter