Upon his shoulders rested a heavy responsibility—a responsibility probably too heavy for any commander at that period, placed in the same circumstances.
With inadequate means, he was intrusted with the defense of a department calling for unlimited resources.
With the fighting men of the city drawn off to other fields, he was expected, out of untried material, to improvise an army to defend her against superior numbers on land and water.
He had striven to utilize all the resources at his command; he had, against obstacles, attempted to get heavy guns for the forts.
All his success had turned to naught.
When the day of trial came, Farragut
's fleet, passing the batteries in the night, made light of his columbiads.
Unhappily a prejudice, directly connected with his duty as commander, combined to injure him. While unremitting in his efforts to administer to the greatest advantage the various functions of his department, Lovell
was continually hampered by lack of public confidence—a lack privately felt, if not always outwardly exhibited.