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 The Shenandoah was a full-rigged ship of 1,000 tons and 250 horse power, with a battery of four 8-inch guns—two 32-pounders and two 12-pounders. She was originally the British ship Sea King, built in 1863 for the East India trade. On her return to England from her first voyage she was purchased by Confederate agents in Europe and fitted out as a cruiser in the Confederate service, primarily to disperse and destroy the New England whaling fleet in the northern seas. She had been designed as a transport for troops, had spacious decks and large air ports, and was well suited for conversion into a cruiser. A fast sailer under canvas, her steam power was more than auxiliary, as she could exceed eleven knots without pressing. Provided with fifteen months stores, she sailed from London on October 8, 1864, in command of her English Master, Captain Corbett, for Madeira. Ten days later she was delivered over to her new commander, Lieut. James J. Waddell, who had taken passage from Liverpool with the officers and men detailed for his command. Among the latter were some picked men from the famous Alabama, which had been sunk by the Kearsage a few months before. The Shenandoah was commissioned on October 19th, and that day cleared for Madeira. The journal of Commander Waddell is now in possession of the Navy Department, and it is a most interesting record of the career of the Shenandoah. On October the 30th the cry of ‘Sail ho!’ rang out from the Shenandoah's masthead. Immediately she bore down upon the distant vessel, an American bark the Alina, of Seaport, Me., bound for Buenos Ayres with railroad iron. She was on her first voyage, thoroughly equipped, nicely coppered, and beautifully clean—a tempting prize. Defence on her part was out of question, and the Confederates boarded and scuttled her, after appropriating such of her furnishings as they could make use of and taking the crew prisoners, six of whom afterward volunteered their service as active men on the Shenandoah. The Alina was valued at $95,000. On November 15th, the Shenandoah crossed the equator. The course thence lay south along the coast of Brazil. Nothing of interest occurred after crossing the line except the interchange of courtesies with neutral vessels until December 4th, when the American whaleship Edward, of, and out of, New Bedford three months, was sighted and captured near the island of Tristan. The Edward had taken a whale and was ‘cutting out’ when captured, her crew being so occupied with the fish that the Shenandoah had come within easy range of her unobserved. The Edward's outfit was of excellent
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