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Gulf operations in 1862 and 1863. see Vol. II., p. 13. by Professor James Russell Soley, U. S. N. The regular monotony of the blockade of Mobile by the West Gulf squadron was interrupted only by the two successful passages of the Oreto or Florida, under Commander J. N. Maffitt, C. S. N., past the blockading squadron, inward on the 4th of September, 1862, and outward on the 16th of January, 1863. The first passage was made in broad daylight, under the disguise of an English gun-vessel, at a time when the Oreto was short-handed, the captain and crew ill, and the battery incapable of resistance. As a bold dash, it was hardly paralleled during the war. The second passage was made at night, without disguise, after the squadron had received full warning, and had been reenforced specially to capture the cruiser. On the Texas coast the blockade was only of moderate efficiency, and in the summer of 1862 Farragut determined to convert it at the principal points into an occupation.