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[26]

General Grayson, reaching Fernandina early in September, found a circular posted, warning ‘all loyal citizens of the United States’ to assemble on the south end of the island to escape the ‘vengeance of an outraged government,’ as the Federal troops were about to take possession; and he reported that ‘as sure as the sun rises’ if war munitions were not sent in thirty days Florida would fall into the hands of the North. But he did not reckon as fully as he might upon the indomitable courage of her people. Florida did not at once become a ‘Yankee province,’ as he expressed it.

General Grayson was in infirm health and died soon after his arrival, being temporarily succeeded in command by Col. W. S. Dilworth, Third regiment Florida volunteers, at Fernandina. On the 10th and 11th of October Maj. W. L. L. Bowen, commanding at Tampa bay, captured two sloops carrying the United States flag with thirteen men.

The quiet which had reigned for some time at Pensacola harbor was disturbed on the early morning of September 14, 1861, by an attack upon the Confederate schooner Judah, which had been fitted out with a pivot and four broadside guns. She was moored to the wharf at the navy yard, under the protection of artillery on shore, when assailed by 100 men from the Federal fleet, in four launches. The Federals boarded the schooner and a fiercely contested fight resulted, in which the crew displayed great courage, but were finally driven to the wharf, where they rallied and, joined by the guard, kept up a continuous fire on the vessel. The Federals had promptly applied the torch to the Judah, and as the flames shot up the alarm roll was sounded along the shore and signal rockets ascended. The Judah burned to the water's edge and sank, and with this achievement the Federal party withdrew, after losing 3 killed and 13 wounded. This is deserving of remembrance as the first encounter of armed forces in the State during the Confederate war, in which

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