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[91] in charge of one of my staff officers, to proceed to the convent of Ursuline nuns near that point, and place the conveyances at their disposal for their immediate removal to the houses provided for them. I also in like manner informed the foreign consuls and the mayor of the contemplated attack, and gave them time to move their families and the citizens most exposed to a place of safety. The noble women of the convent, while recognizing the courtesy extended to them, expressed a preference to remain and nurse the wounded, offering their building as a hospital. Many of the inhabitants left the houses most exposed to the enemy's fire, and I am happy to state that, although many edifices were much injured and the town riddled by balls, no casualty occurred among the citizens. The wounded of the enemy were conducted to the same hospital, and the same attentions were bestowed on them as if they had been our own men. Captain Wainright and Lieutenant Lea, of the Federal navy, were buried with masonic and military honors in the same grave; Major Lea, of the Confederate army, father of Lieutenant Lea, performing the funeral services.

Having buried the dead, taken care of the wounded, and secured the captured property, my exertions were directed to getting the Harriet Lane to sea. The enemy's ships fled to New Orleans, to which place one of their steam transports was dispatched during the action. I knew that a large naval force might be expected to return in a few days. I therefore ordered the employment, at high wages, of all the available mechanics to repair the Harriet Lane, her main shaft having been dislocated and her iron wheel greatly disabled, so that the engine could not work. The United States flags were ordered to remain flying on the custom-house and at the mastheads of the ships, so as to attract into the harbor any of the enemy's vessels which might be bound for the port of Galveston. A line of iron buoys, which they had established for the guidance of his ships in the harbor, were displaced and so arranged as to insure their getting aground.

On the 3d of January, I being then on board of the Harriet Lane, a yawl boat containing several men, in command of a person named Thomas Smith, recently a citizen of Galveston, and who had deserted from our army, was reported


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