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[316] fort, and retreat to Taylor's bayou, and there to try to hold the the enemy in check. When these orders were made known to Lieutenant Dowling-Captain Odlum being in command of the post in the town of Sabine, in place of Colonel Griffin, who had charge of the post, but who had gone to Houston to attend a court-martial—asked his men if they wished to do this. They replied: ‘No; we prefer to fight while there is a detachment to man the guns.’ About this time the Federals began firing. The guns in the fort consisted of two 32-pounders, two 24-pounders, and two brass-mounted howitzers. The 31-pounders, will here be remarked, were some old guns which the Federals had damaged by spiking and cutting to the trunnions. They were taken to Houston and repaired by the Confederates. These guns proved the most effective in battle of any which were fired, as they crippled the Sachem, Clifton, and Arizona. (A part of the old gunboat Clifton is still visible at Sabine Pass.)

The attack from the gunboats continued, the ground around the fort being torn up; still no return of fire from Dowling, he withholding and waiting until the vessels came within easy range to fire his first shot. Meanwhile he spoke with words of courage and good cheer to his men, urging upon them the necessity of making every fire from their guns damage the enemy, and to use their ammunition with the greatest economy. He did not allow his men to put their heads above the parapet, and the Federals had about come to the conclusion that there was no one in the fort and that they had wasted their ammunition. They came nearer and nearer, and when at a point where Dowling, who had been keeping a close watch, knew the shots could take effect, he ordered his men to their places and gave the command ‘Fire!’

Just here is where Dowling evinced his true judgment of warfare. The shots poured into the gunboats, and soon the Sachem and Clifton were at the mercy of the Confederates, while the Arizona backed and turned seaward, but was crippled in the hull. She managed to get out to sea, where she sunk that night with all on board. It is estimated there were at least 250 men lost, and many bodies were found on the shores of Louisiana and Texas.

After just thirty-eight minutes from the time Dowling ordered his men to fire the first shot, the white flag was seen to go up on the flagship Clifton. Lieutenant Dowling went aboard, accompanied by Dr. George H. Bailey, as a signal for a surgeon had been given by the enemy. Commodore Crocker met them and surrendered his sword to Lieutenant Dowling. Dr. Bailey administered to the

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