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Without a country and without a flag.

This information naturally effected a complete change in our status. It not only deprived us of the authority for being at sea, but actually prohibited our being there at all. The commissions of Captain Waddell and his officers, literally speaking, were now ‘not worth the paper they were written on.’ We were without a country and without a flag. The ship itself had become the property of the United States.

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