Crulse of the Nashville.
To the Editors of the Dispatch: I send you a brief account of our cruise in the Nashville since leaving the ‘"Land of Dixle,"’ hoping it may be of interest to those who have watched us on the perilous voyage.
We run the blookade of Charleston harbor on the night of the 26th of October last.
The Federal war-steamers Flag and Susquehanna lay just outside, but the night being intensely dark we passed close beside them without being observed.
Shaping our course for the Bermudadsles, we arrived there at 2 P. M. on the 30th, and came to anchor in the harbor of St. George.
We learned on our arrival that the Yankee steamer Connecticut had just left the harbor and had gone out to look for us. Regardless of her, however, we took in a supply of coal and went to sea, steering for Southampton, Eng. The voyage was rough and stormy and our ship became much strained and leaky, owing to the gales we encountered.
On the night of November 9th, while lying to, head on to a tremenduous sea, we received considerable damage, the storm carrying away part of both wheelhouses, the bulwarks on either side, and a portion of the hurricane deck forward the port wheelhouse.--But we rode out the gale in safety, and despite the heavy weather, ploughed steadily on our way. Tuesday, 19th, Captain Pegram discovered a sall in the distance, and on making up to it, encountered the Yankee clipper ship Harvie Birch, from Havre to New York, in ballast.
We immediately boarded her and took possession, bringing her papers and crew, with their baggage, on board.
The ship was then fired, and we saw her burned to the water's edge.
The Harvie Birch was a clipper, 1,500 tons burden, and valued at $150,000.
On the morning of November 21st, at 8 o'clock, our voyage came to an end, and the Nashville anchored in the river just off the Southampton Docks.
The English frigate Dauntless was lying at anchor in the stream, and saluted us as we passed by dipping her colors.
As far as we are able to judge, the English seem to sympathise with the South; but, a neutrals, they positively refused to render us any assistance, except to supply us with coal, and to give such aid as was necessary to render the vessel sea-worthy.
Immediately upon our arrival, the crew of the Harvie Birch, were released.
Soon after the Nashville was hauled into the dry dock and received a thorough overhauling.
Everything passed off very quietly and all hands, fore and aft, were allowed to go ashore, and had a jolly time at the different places of amusement and with the girls of ‘"merrie England."’
In the afternoon, January 8th, there was considerable excitement, both on shore and on board, on account of the arrival of the Yankee corvette Tuscarora.
John Bull's dignity was fearfully aroused at having one of his ports blockaded, talked much of neutrality, and looked rather suspiciously upon the Yankees.
One day some of the crew of the Tuscarora were seen prowling around our ship, but they were ordered off by the police, and were not allowed in the docks again, except to pass through, and then they were closely watched.
Nothing of much importance transpired during the remainder of our stay in Southampton.
We often heard from the Sumter, and at the last accounts she had captured and destroyed over twenty Yankee ships.
On the 3d of February, we started our fires preparatory to running out. The whatves and docks were crowded when the smoke from our stack was seen, and with a pilot on board we steamed down the river.
At 6 P. M. we passed the Tuscarora at Cowes.
The Yankee had been ordered not to follow us for twenty-four hours, and the British frigates Shannon and Dauntless had on a full head of steam and everything in readiness to pitch into him if he attempted it. We ran safely out to sea, passing, as it was supposed, another Yankee not far off, but as the night was dark and hazy we were unnoticed by her. We felt very safe as the Nashville ran out to sea, and the crew hauled everything taut on board to the following song: ‘ "The Tuscarora is a snorer,
Beaufort, N. C,
on board C. S. Steamer Nashville.
Her Captain is a crazy man;
His name is Craven, and his raving
For the Nashville, dashed his plan."
’ Undoubtedly, if he had not been quite so eager for us, it would have left him in a better state of mind. On the morning of the 4th we were far out to sea. The ‘"homeward bound"’ pasage was also stormy, with neavy head winds all the way. On the 14th inst., while lying to, riding out a hurricane from the nor'west, we had to put off and run before the wind to the south'ard to keep from swamping. We passed through the gale in safety, and arrived at the Bermudas for the second time on Thursday, the 20th inst. We took on board about two hundred tons of coal, and five passengers from a Confederate schooner that ran ashore off the west end of the island. The Captain of the schooner being acquainted with this port, offered to pilot us in, and Capt. Pegram, thinking this the safest place to enter, laid our course accordingly on the morning of the 24th. After leaving the harbor of St. George, the second day out — the 25th--We captured and destroyed the Yankee schooner, Robert Gilfillian, from Philadelphia, bound to St. Domingo. She was 140 tons burden, nearly new, and had an assorted cargo; the whole was valued at $25,000. The Captain and crew, consisting of seven men, all told, were taken on board. And now I come to the best part of our trip. One morning at daylight Cape Look out light was visible, bearing Nne. We ran in towards it, and soon the blockading steamer Blenville was seen bearing four points off our starboard bow, and we steering due North for the entrance to Beanfort We hoisted the Yankee flag and steered in a direct line for the blockader; but when we got near enough to make our bearings, hauled down the ‘"Stars and Stripes"’ and hoisted the ‘"Confederate flag,"’ and made direct for the bar. Seeing the mistake, the Yankees started in pursuit and fired twenty-one shots at us — all of which, except one, were poorly aimed, and that fell short. We fired once, but the range being too long, the shot fell short. Straight into the harbor the Nashville ran, greeted as we passed. Fort Macon by the hearty cheers of the soldiers. We are now safely moored under the guns of the fort, and — glorious thought!--once more in the land of ‘"Dixie."’ Ocean Rover.