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[35] metal throughout the day. From the defective structure of Fort McRee it was unable to return this terrific fire with any effect.

Assailed at the same time from the south by Fort Pickens and its outer batteries, the devoted garrison of this confined work, under the gallant Colonel Villepigue, both Georgia and Mississippi regiments, seemed to be destined to destruction. Three times was the woodwork of the fort on fire, threatening to expel its occupants, and as often extinguished. The magazines were laid bare to the enemy's shells, which constantly exploded around them, and a wooden building to the windward on the outside of the fort taking fire, showers of live cinders were driven constantly through the broken doors of one of the magazines, threatening destruction to the whole garrison. In the midst of this terrible ordeal the coolness and selfpos-session of the commander inspired all with confidence, and enabled him to hold a position which seemed to others utterly untenable.

Toward evening our sand batteries appeared to have crippled the Hartford [Richmond], and she drew off and did not again join in the combat. Darkness closed the contest, which had lasted more than eight hours without an intermission. For the number and caliber of guns and weight of metal brought into action it will rank with the heaviest bombardment in the world. It was grand and sublime. The houses in Pensacola, 10 miles off, trembled from the effect, and immense quantities of dead fish floated to the surface in the bay and lagoon, stunned by the concussion. Our troops behaved with the greatest coolness and gallantry, and surprised me by the regularity and accuracy of their firing, a result which would have been creditable to veterans.

A dark cloud, accompanied by rain and wind, at 6 o'clock so obscured the night as to enable us to withdraw in safety our transport steamers, which had been caught at the navy yard. The gunboat Nelms, Lieutenant Manston,

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