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[53] sight a new earth, of which, perhaps, they never had even dreamed. The streets and alleys of the city had been the theatre of many an upheaval; but I question if New Orleans, as a whole, ever before, or since, got into such a scrape, or had so happy an issue out of a deplorable condition.

Of course the gallant action of our fleet in forcing its way past these forts, and dealing with the rebel crafts above, was a theme on which it was our delight to dwell, and from which we gathered inspiration. The gunboat Varuna sunk or disabled six of her antagonists before she received her mortal wound; but the gallant Captain Boggs ran his sinking ship to the bank and tied her to a tree, and saved every soul aboard. The trucks of the bow gun-carriage were under water when the gun fired its last shot. When I climbed to her half-submerged deck a few months afterwards, I instinctively took off my cap in salute of the flag that once proudly floated at her peak, but was not hauled down in token of surrender. But the tangible reminder of all the gallant deeds performed in connection with the capture of the forts rendered our inaction more and more irksome.

Then came the rumor—through rebel sources (sources, by the way, through which we received much information of the doings in Washington)—that General Banks had been ordered to relieve General Butler. On Sunday, December 14, 1862, General Banks and his fleet of transports passed the forts. ‘Mobile and Texas,’ so ran the rumor, ‘are to be annexed at once.’ We hoped to be included in the annexation business. But the programme was materially modified. About three months later I received a letter from General Dudley's adjutant-general asking me to come to Baton Rouge immediately, for he and other officers had recommended me to Colonel Paine, of the First Louisiana Regiment, who desired an adjutant familiar with the duties of the office. By reason of lack of transportation, a week or two passed before I was able to report; and then I found the army all ready to move out towards Port Hudson. The colonel had been obliged to detail one of his own officers, and it was too late to make any change. I housed my disappointment and resumed my duties at Fort St. Philip.

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