Louisiana infantry, commanding, was also at the yard when the firing commenced; but she was gallantly backed out, and proceeded to Pensacola unharmed. The fire of the enemy, though terrific in sound and fury, proved to have been only slightly damaging, except to McRee. From Fort Pickens and the sand batteries we sustained very little injury. From the shipping, which fired with much greater accuracy, the fort and garrison of McRee suffered more. Our loss from the enemy's shot was 21 wounded— 1 mortally, who died that night; 12 of the others so slightly as not to take them from duty. By an unfortunate accident—the caving in of a defective magazine badly planned and constructed—we had 6 other gallant men smothered, who died calling on their comrades never to give up the fort. Our women and children escaped through a shower of balls without an accident. The reports brought in during the night by my staff officers, dispatched to every point, were very satisfactory and encouraging, except from Fort McRee. Exposed in front, flank and reverse, with half its armament disabled and magazines exposed, without the ability to return the enemy's fire, it was proposed to blow it up and abandon it. Upon mature reflection as to the effect this would have on the morale of my own troops as well as the enemy, I determined to hold it to the last extremity. An engineer officer and large working party were dispatched to Colonel Villepigue with the decision. Though suffering from a painful wound, he devoted the entire night to the necessary repairs. It was not our policy to keep up this unequal contest at long range, so we waited the enemy's fire the next morning. At about 10:30 he again opened, though much more slowly, and with only one ship. We responded, as before, with caution and deliberation. Their fire was so much slackened that our apprehension about McRee was greatly relieved, and our sand batteries played with a better prospect of success against the remaining ship. Toward
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