Mr. Charles Johnston, boatswain of the Congress — a fine specimen of the thorough seaman, who has been in the navy some thirty odd years — greatly excited the admiration of the officers by cool, unflinching courage. Stationed in the very midst of the carnage committed by the raking fire of the Merrimac, he never lost his self-possession, and not for a moment failed to cheer on and encourage the men. Blinded with the smoke and dust, and splashed with the blood and brains of his shipmates, his cheering words of encouragement were still heard. After the engagement, from which he escaped unwounded, his kindness and care in providing for the removal of the wounded, were as conspicuous as his previous bravery.
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