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France (France) (search for this): chapter 51
otection of their own coast against a foreign foe, and for the capture of the Confederate cruisers which were then committing such havoc upon Federal commerce. No one knew at what time the United States might be involved in war with England or France, particularly the former country, which had afforded the South so much assistance in fitting out cruisers, that matters could not go on any longer without subjecting the Federal Government to the contempt of all civilized Powers. Although the Coederals may be said to have been in their infancy in such matters, and had to make great exertions to catch up with the powers of Europe; but by the end of 1864 they were quite in a condition to vindicate their rights and rebuke Great Britain and France for the unfair advantage they had taken in their hour of distress. Besides a number of single-turreted Monitors (the names of which have often appeared in these pages), there were built seven or eight double-turreted Monitors of the Monadnock cl
Adirondack (New York, United States) (search for this): chapter 51
tabular statement exhibits the number and description of vessels that had been constructed, or put in the course of construction, for the Navy after the institution of active measures for the suppression of the rebellion. Some of them were built by contract; others by the Government, in the several Navy Yards. If we add to the number those constructed under similar circumstances, and within the same period, that had been lost by shipwreck, in battle, etc., viz.: the sloops Housatonic and Adirondack, and the iron-clads Monitor, Weehawken, Keokuk, Indianola and Tecumseh, the aggregate would be 210 vessels, 1,675 guns and 256,755 tons. Picket-boats, and small craft built for especial purposes, are not embraced in this statement. Potomac flotilla, January 1, 1864. Commander Foxhall A. Parker. Steamer Ella. Acting-Master, J. H. Eldredge; Paymaster, J. N. Carpenter; Acting-Ensign, E. A. Roderick; Acting-Master's Mates, W. H. Flood, H. C. Eldredge and W. L. Gilley; Engin
ould be superior to any ships of their class abroad, not only in the power of their guns but in their speed. At that moment the exigencies of the times had stimulated the inventive faculties of American ship and engine builders to make vast improvements in vessels-of-war — in machinery, in naval ordnance and in projectiles. At the commencement of the war, the Federals may be said to have been in their infancy in such matters, and had to make great exertions to catch up with the powers of Europe; but by the end of 1864 they were quite in a condition to vindicate their rights and rebuke Great Britain and France for the unfair advantage they had taken in their hour of distress. Besides a number of single-turreted Monitors (the names of which have often appeared in these pages), there were built seven or eight double-turreted Monitors of the Monadnock class, which alone were quite capable of guarding the coast against the heaviest ships in the French or English navies. Seven vessel
Liverpool (United Kingdom) (search for this): chapter 51
for what the Confederates had done against the commerce of any other government. There was in the latter part of 1864 a growing feeling in the Federal States against the action of Great Britain, which, though the latter began to pay more attention to its neutral obligations (owing to the strong protests of Mr. Adams, Federal minister at the Court of St. James), still allowed these cruisers to escape to sea; and several ironclad rams, built by John Laird & Co., were preparing for sea, at Liverpool. These rams would, no doubt, have escaped but for the earnest remonstrances of the American minister, who in the most emphatic manner declared to the British Government that, to permit these vessels to depart, would be considered an act of war. Under these circumstances Her Majesty's Government had no difficulty in finding reasons for seizing and detaining the rains, after a three months controversy over the matter. Among the most outspoken of the members of the Federal Cabinet in rega
Fredericksburg, Va. (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 51
s, captured and destroyed. Most of this work had to be done at night, and throughout the war the most wearing vigilance was kept up by the different commanders and officers who had been employed in the Potomac flotilla. Besides the watchfulness required in pursuit of the blockade-runners, the flotilla was at all times ready to give its active and willing co-operation to any military movement, and this assistance was frequently called for. While the Federal Army was in the vicinity of Fredericksburg, in the spring and summer, the services of the smaller steamers were constantly invoked. They opened communication between military forces, cleared large numbers of torpedoes from the river, made it safe for the transports to move with supplies or troops, drove the Confederate bushwhackers from the banks of the river, and returned with the sick and wounded from the field of battle. The gun-boats that served upon this duty were of very light draft, purchased for this particular work,
England (United Kingdom) (search for this): chapter 51
committing such havoc upon Federal commerce. No one knew at what time the United States might be involved in war with England or France, particularly the former country, which had afforded the South so much assistance in fitting out cruisers, thanment to the contempt of all civilized Powers. Although the Confederate Government only managed to procure vessels from England through shifts and stratagems, yet it was very evident that the British Government was not taking vigorous steps to put her government. There was in the latter part of 1864 a growing feeling in the Federal States against the action of Great Britain, which, though the latter began to pay more attention to its neutral obligations (owing to the strong protests of Mr.with the powers of Europe; but by the end of 1864 they were quite in a condition to vindicate their rights and rebuke Great Britain and France for the unfair advantage they had taken in their hour of distress. Besides a number of single-turreted Mo
United States (United States) (search for this): chapter 51
which were then committing such havoc upon Federal commerce. No one knew at what time the United States might be involved in war with England or France, particularly the former country, which had recognize its diplomatic agents without practically acknowledging the independence of the Confederate States; and this point should not only have warned neutral Powers against granting belligerent riresponsible for anything done by its cruisers, as was shown in the end by its collapse. The United States alone could then be held responsible for what the Confederates had done against the commerceow foreign Powers that, even with the great strain that was laid upon Federal resources, the United States could not only fit out cruisers against the Alabamas, but could build such vessels as would g up the Navy. It will be seen in the end that it did more to establish the standing of the United States abroad than even the advance of the Federal armies; and, among other things, it completely s
West Indies (search for this): chapter 51
e way which for a time impeded the progress of his plans. In the first place, Mr. Welles attached too much importance to the blockade of the Southern ports and listened too much to the clamors of commanders of squadrons for more vessels on their stations; for inferior-built steamers could have performed that duty as well as the sea-going corvettes. Then, his plans were interfered with by Commodore Wilkes, who not only had a squadron of twelve vessels with which he patrolled the Gulf and West Indies, but also seized upon the fastest cruisers the Secretary of the Navy had sent on special duty to go in pursuit of the Confederates, and detained the vessels belonging to the neighboring stations and attached them to his squadron. In one instance, at least, there was a chance of capturing the Alabama, which had touched at all the ports where her pursuer followed her, but the latter was just a month too late. Though the Navy Department may have been at fault in its judgment in not sending
Maryland (Maryland, United States) (search for this): chapter 51
t brilliant, but it was useful. Besides the duties involved in patroling the Potomac, the Rappahannock River was added to Commander Parker's district. There was at one time an extensive contraband trade between Virginia and the lower part of Maryland, by which the Confederates frequently received large amounts of supplies; and the blockade-runners (such as they were) were quite as indefatigable in their attempts to provision the Confederates in Virginia as the larger vessels running the blockade on the coast. The small craft that were engaged in this traffic between Maryland and Virginia were well adapted for the business, and calculated to avoid detection. The traders themselves were reckless and unscrupulous men, not working with any patriotic feeling to serve the Confederate cause, but to enrich themselves by the large returns they received for the supplies so much needed by private and public parties. No greater vigilance was exhibited anywhere than was shown by the offi
Rappahannock (Virginia, United States) (search for this): chapter 51
Increase of the Navy, and improvements in naval ships, during the year 1864. The Potomac Flotilla during 1864 remained under the command of Commander Foxhall A. Parker, a valuable officer, who conducted the affairs of his little squadron with so much efficiency that he was enabled to carry out all the objects for which the flotilla was intended. The work of this department of the Navy was not brilliant, but it was useful. Besides the duties involved in patroling the Potomac, the Rappahannock River was added to Commander Parker's district. There was at one time an extensive contraband trade between Virginia and the lower part of Maryland, by which the Confederates frequently received large amounts of supplies; and the blockade-runners (such as they were) were quite as indefatigable in their attempts to provision the Confederates in Virginia as the larger vessels running the blockade on the coast. The small craft that were engaged in this traffic between Maryland and Virgini
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