Here they remained until 10 a. m., when they steamed slowly up the river.
To observers on the levee, their stately motion might have looked like a triumphal procession.
In truth, it was one, destined to end only before the great city which was to recognize it, as it had done O'Reilly
's fleet nearly ninety-three years before, as a ‘public enemy.’
While the bombardment was going on two men, directly connected with New Orleans, were watching it. One of them was her returning commander; the other her coming dictator.
One had come down on a steamboat, on official business, and had seen with foreboding the fiery passage; the other, surrounded by transports, from a point about 800 yards from Fort Jackson
, had witnessed with joy the fearful transit of broadsides.
One, on his steamboat, believing that New Orleans could not, with her ‘interior line’ of defense, resist the fleet which had so victoriously swept through her ‘exterior line,’ hastened sadly back to the city to see what more could be done for her. The battle between New Orleans and the fleet, having been fought once at the forts, was already over.
None was surer of this than Mansfield Lovell
Shortly after the fleet had steamed up the river, on the 24th, a gunboat from below, with a flag of truce, appeared with a verbal demand for the surrender of the forts.
The demand was made in the name of Commander D. D. Porter
, U. S. N. Porter
, present on a gunboat, accompanied the verbal demand with a threat to re-open the bombardment in case of refusal.
The demand was rejected, and with the rejection the bombardment reopened.
It began about mid-day and continued until near sundown, when it ceased altogether.
was transferring his troops by way of Sable Island
to the rear of the forts, preparing to occupy both sides of the river above the forts.
On April 25th no attack was made by the enemy.
The forts still prepared for a successful resistance.