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[333] Georgetown, S. C.; but seeing the smoke of two steamers to the northward, I stopped the engines and made ready to destroy the vessels on their approach, as we were in a condition too exhausted to run successfully.

Fortunately, the smoke of the blockaders disappeared on the horizon, and we steamed on up to the entrance of Georgetown, but on going in got aground on the bar. Sending out a boat to take soundings, I observed a boat pulling around a point of land inside, filled with armed men. At the same moment a body of horsemen came down on the beach. Not knowing but that this port also had fallen into the hands of the enemy, I called my boat alongside and made such preparations for defence as I could devise. When close enough, the boat hailed us to know what ship it was. I answered by asking whether they were Federals or Confederates. Their reply was: “We are South Carolinians,” and I answered: “This is the Confederate States steamer Nashville,” which at first they seemed to discredit. Finally they approached, and I was told by the officer in command that Colonel Manigault, who was commanding ashore, had directed that if I was a Confederate vessel I should hoist another flag under the one already up. I told him I had no other except the United States flag, and this might mislead him. I then told him I needed a pilot. He readily and very quickly pulled ashore, and returned with one, bringing me a message from Colonel Manigault that I could place implicit confidence in him, to let him take the ship up to Georgetown, and requesting me to come ashore and confer with him. In the meantime the Nashville, having been got afloat by me, was placed in charge of this pilot and steamed up to Georgetown.

I went ashore and was received by Colonel Manigault, of the South Carolina forces, with a hearty welcome and cheers from his troops. Colonel Manigault inquired whether I had seen the blockaders off Georgetown. I replied that I had seen their smoke going off up the coast, whereupon he informed me that this was the first day for many weeks that they had absented themselves from their post in front of the harbor. I proceeded at once to Richmond and reported to S. R. Mallory, Secretary of the Navy, who directed me to return to Charleston and confer with Messrs. Fraser, Trenholm & Co., the purchasers of the vessel, and to take all necessary steps to effect her transfer to them as speedily as possible. I went to Charleston and in concert with them or their agents the business was closed, they giving the command of the ship, at my request, to Captain Gooding. Being unable to carry out any cargo on account of the

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