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submerged obstructions, but the rebels had also Inclosed herewith are copies of the letters of Colcollected there a formidable fleet, commanded by onel Anderson, and the reply of General Granger their highest naval officer-a former captain in and myself, marked Nos. 1 and 2, respectively. the Union navy-who, false to the government Very respectfully, your obedient servant, and the Union, had deserted his country in the
D. G. FARRAGUT, hour of peril, and levelled his guns against the
Rear-Admiral Commanding W. G. B. Squadron. flag which it was his duty to have defended.
Hon. GIDEON WELLES, The possession of Mobile Bay, which you have
Secretary of the Navy, Washington. acquired, will close the illicit traffic which has
LETTER FROM COLONEL ANDERSON TO REAR-ADMIRAL been carried on by running the blockade in that
FARRAGUT. part of the Gulf, and gives point and value to the success you have achieved.
HEADQUARTERS, FORT GAINES, August 7, 1864. Great results in war are seldom obtained with To_Admiral Farragut, Commanding Naval out great risks, and it was not expected that the forces off Dauphin Island: possession of the harbor of Mobile would be se-! Feeling my inability to maintain my present cured without disaster. The loss of the gallant position longer than you may see fit to open upon Craven and his brave companions, with the me with the fleet, and feeling also the uselessness Tecumseh, (a vessel that was invulnerable to the of entailing upon ourselves further destruction of guns of Fort Morgan,) by a concealed torpedo, hite, I have the honor to propose the surrender was a casualty against which no human foresight of Fort Gaines, its garrison, stores, etc. could guard. While the nation awards cheer
I trust to your magnanimity for obtaining honful honors to the living, she will ever hold in orable terms, which I respectfully request that grateful remembrance the memory of the gallant you will transmit to me, and allow me sufficient and lamented dead, who perilled their lives for
time to consider them and return an answer. their country and died in her cause.
This communication will be handed to you by To you and the brave officers and sailors of Major W. R. Browne. your squadron, who participated in this great Tam, sir, very respectfully, your obedient achievement, the Department tenders its thanks. servant,
C. D. ANDERSON, and those of the Government and country.
Colonel Commanding. Very respectfully, etc.,
JOINT LETTER FROM REAR-ADMIRAL FARRAGUT AND GIDEON WELLES,
MAJOR-GENERAL GRANGER TO COLONEL ANDERSON. Secretary of the Navy.
Flag-SHIP HARTFORD, MOBILE Bay, August 7, 1864. Rear-Admiral David G. Farragut,
Sir: In accordance with the proposal made in Commanding West Gulf Blockading Squadron, Mobile Bay.
your letter of this morning for the surrender of
cating with General Granger, in command of our
First. The unconditional surrender of yourself SQUADRON, MOBILE BAY, August 8, 1864.) and the garrison of Fort Gaines, with all of the Sir: I have the honor to inform the Depart- public property within its limits. ment that Fort Powell was evacuated on the Second. The treatment which is in conformity night of the fifth instant. The rebels blew up with the custom of the most civilized nations tomuch of the fort, but we took all of the guns, ward prisoners of war. and those of the best quality, a list of which will Third. Private property, with the exception of be forwarded. We took some covered barges arms, will be respected. also from Fort Powell and Cedar Point, which do This communication will be handed you by us good service as a work-shop. The Fleet Engi- Fleet Captain P. Drayton, and Colonel Myer of neer and Fleet Paymaster caine in the Stock- the U. S. army, who fully understand the views dale, with iron, etc., for the repairs of our vessel. of General Granger and myself.
On the afternoon of the sixth, the Chickasaw Very respectfully, your obedient serv went down and shelled Fort Gaines, and on the
D. G. FARRAGUT, morning of the seventh I received a communica
Rear-Admiral. tion from Colonel Anderson, commanding the
Major-General U. S. Army. Fort, offering to surrender to the fleet, asking the
Colonel C. D. ANDERSON, best conditions. I immediately sent for General
Commanding Fort Gaines. Granger, and in the evening had Colonel Anderson and Major Browne on board, and the agree- ATTACK ON THE DEFENCES OF MOBILE-DETAILED ment was signed by all parties.
REPORT OF REAR-ADMIRAL D. G. FARRAGUT. At seven A.m., August eighth, Fleet Cap U. S. FLAG-SHIP HARTFORD, MOBILE BAY, Aug. 12, 1864. tain Drayton, on the part of the navy, and Col. Sir: I had the honor to forward to the Depart. onel Myer, on the part of the army, proceeded to ment, on the evening of the fifth instant, a report the Fort to carry out the stipulations of the agree- of my entrée into Mobile Bay on the morning of ment, and at forty-five minutes past nine, the that day, and which, though brief, contained all Fort surrendered, and the Stars and Stripes were the principal facts of the attack. hoisted on the staff amid the cheers of the fleet.! Notwithstanding the loss of life, particularly
on this ship, and the terrible disaster to the mander George Brown; Oneida, Commander Tecumseh, the result of the fight was a glorious I. R. M. Mullany, with the Galena, Lieutenant victory, and I have reason to feel proud of the Commander C. H. Wells. The iron-clads-Teofficers, seamen, and marines of the squadron cumseh, Commander T. A. M. Craven; the Manunder my command, for it has never fallen to hattan, Commander 1 W. A. Nicholson; the the lot of an officer to be thus situated and thus Winnebago, Commander T. H. Stevens; and the sustained. Regular discipline will bring men to Chickasaw, Lieutenant Commander G. H. Perany amount of endurance, but there is a natural kins-were already inside the bar, and had been fear of hidden dangers, particularly when so aw- ordered to take up their positions on the starfully destructive of human life as the torpedo, board side of the wooden ships, or between them which requires more than discipline to overcome and Fort Morgan, for the double purpose of
Preliminary to a report of the action of the keeping down the fire from the water-battery and fifth, I desire to call the attention of the Depart. the parapet guns of the fort, as well as to attack ment to the previous steps taken in consultation the ram Tennessee as soon as the Fort was with Generals Canby and Granger. On the passed. eighth of July I had an interview with these offi- It was only at the urgent request of the Capcers on board the Hartford, on the subject of an tains and coinmanding officers that I yielded to attack upon Forts Morgan and Gaines, at which the Brooklyn being the leading ship of the line, it was agreed that General Canby would send all as she had four chase-guns and an ingenious arthe troops he could spare to cooperate with the rangement for picking up torpedoes, and because, fleet. Circumstances soon obliged General Canby in their judgment, the flag-ship ought not to be to inform me that he could not despatch a suffi- too much exposed. This I believe to be an error; cient number to invest both forts, and in reply I for apart from the fact that exposure is one of the suggested that Gaines should be the first in- penalties of rank in the navy, it will always be vested, engaging to have a force in the sound the aim of the enemy to destroy the flag-ship, ready to protect the landing of the army on and, as will appear in the sequel, such attempt Dauphin Island in the rear of that fort, and I as-was very persistently made, but Providence did signed Lieutenant Commander De Krafft, of the not permit it to be successful. Conemaugh, to that duty.
The attacking fleet steamed steadily up the On the first instant General Granger visited me main ship-channel, the Tecumseh firing the first again on the Hartford. In the mean time the shot at forty-seven minutes past six o'clock. At Tecumseh had arrived at Pensacola, and Captain six minutes past seven the Fort opened upon us, Craven had informed me that he would be ready and was replied to by a gun from the Brooklyn, in four days for any service. We therefore fixed and immediately after the action became general. upon the fourth of August as the day for the It was soon apparent that there was some diffilanding of the troops and my entrance into the culty ahead. The Brooklyn, for some cause bay; but owing to delays mentioned in Captain which I did not then clearly understand, but Jenkins's communication to me, the Tecumseh which has since been explained by Captain Alden was not ready. General Granger, however, to in his report, arrested the advance of the whole my mortification, was up to time, and the troops fleet, while, at the same time, the guns of the actually landed on Dauphin Island.
Fort were playing with great effect upon that vesAs subsequent events proved, the delay turned sel and the Hartford. A moment after I saw the to our advantage, as the rebels were busily en- Tecumseh struck by a torpedo, disappear almost gaged during the fourth in throwing troops and instantaneously beneath the waves, carrying with supplies into Fort Gaines, all of which were cap- her her gallant commander and nearly all her tured a few days afterward.
crew. I determined at once, as I had originally The Tecumseh arrived on the evening of the intended, to take the lead, and after ordering the fourth, and every thing being propitious, I pro- Metacomet to send a boat to save, if possible, any ceeded to the attack on the following morning of the perishing crew, I dashed ahead with the
As mentioned in my previous despatch, the Hartford, and the ships followed on, their officers vessels outside the bar, which were designed to believing that they were going to a noble death participate in the engagement, were all under with their commander-in-chief. way by forty minutes past five in the morning, I steamed through between the buoys, where in the following order, two abreast, and lashed to the torpedoes were supposed to have been sunk. gether: Brooklyn, Captain James Alden, with the These buoys had been previously examined by Öctorara, Lieutenant Commander C. H. Green, my Flag-Lieutenant, I. Crittenden Watson, in on the port side; Hartford, Captain Percival several nightly reconnoissances. Though he had Drayton, with the Metacomet, Lieutenant Com- not been able to discover the sunken torpedoes, mander I. E. Jouett; Richmond, Captain T. A. yet we had been assured by refugees, deserters, Jenkins, with the Port Royal, Lieutenant Com- and others, of their existence, but, believing that mander B. Gherardi; Lackawanna, Captain J. B. from their having been some time in the water, Marchand, with the Seminole, Commander E. they were probably innocuous, I determined to Donaldson; Monongahela, Commander J. H. take the chance of their explosion. Strong, with the Kennebec, Lieutenant Com From the moment I turned to the north-westmander W. P. McCann; Ossipee, Commander ward, to clear the middle ground, we were en* V. E. Le Roy, with the Itasca, Lieutenant Com-labled to keep such a broadside fire upon the bat
teries of Fort Morgan that their guns did us com- through her iron plating and heavy wooden paratively little injury.
backing, though the missile itself did not enter Just after we passed the Fort, which was about the vessel. ten minutes before eight o'clock, the ram Ten- Immediately after the collision with the flagnessee dashed out at this ship, as had been ex. ship, I directed Captain Drayton to bear down pected, and in anticipation of which I had ordered for the ram again. He was doing so at full the Monitors on our starboard side. I took no speed when, unfortunately, the Lackawanna run further notice of her than to return her fire. into the Hartford just forward of the mizzen
The rebel gunboats, Morgan, Gaines, and Sel-mast, cutting her down to within two feet of the ma, were ahead, and the latter particularly an-water's edge. We soon got clear again, how. noyed us with a raking fire, which our guns ever, and were fast approaching our adversary, could not return. At two minutes after eight when she struck her colors and run up the white o'clock I ordered the Metacomet to cast off and Aag. go in pursuit of the Selma. Captain Jouett was | She was at this time sore beset; the Chickaafter her in a moment, and in an hour's time he saw was pounding away at her stern, the Ossi- . had her as a prize. She was commanded by pee was approaching her at full speed, and the P. N. Murphy, formerly of the United States Monongahela, Lackawanna, and this ship were navy. He was wounded in the wrist, his execu- bearing down upon her, determined upon her tive officer, Lieutenant Comstock, and eight of destruction. Her smoke-stack had been shot the crew, killed, and seven or eight wounded. away, her steering chains were gone, compelling Lieutenant Commander Jouett's conduct during a resort to her relieving tackles, and several of the whole affair commands my warmest com- her port shutters were jammed. Indeed, from mendations. The Morgan and Gaines succeeded the time the Hartford struck her until her surin escaping under the protection of the guns of render she never fired a gun. As the Ossipee, Fort Morgan, which would have been prevented Commander Le Roy, was about to strike her, she had the other gunboats been as prompt in their hoisted the white flag, and that vessel immemovements as the Metacomet; the want of diately stopped her engine, though not in time to pilots, however, I believe, was the principal diffi- avoid a glancing blow. culty. The Gaines was so injured by our fire During this contest with the rebel gunboats that she had to be run ashore, where she was and the ram Tennessee, and which terminated subsequently destroyed, but the Morgan escaped by her surrender at ten o'clock, we lost many to Mobile during the night, though she was more men than from the fire of the batteries of chased and fired upon by our cruisers.
Fort Morgan. Having passed the forts and dispersed the Admiral Buchanan was wounded in the leg; enemy's gunboats, I had ordered most of the ves- two or three of his men were killed, and five or sels to anchor, when I perceived the ram Ten- six wounded. Commander Johnston, formerly of nessee standing up for this ship. This was at the United States navy, was in command of the forty-five minutes past eight. I was not long in Tennessee, and came on board the flag-ship, to comprehending his intentions to be the destruc- surrender his sword and that of Admiral Bution of the flag-ship. The Monitors and such of chanan. The surgeon, Doctor Conrad, came the wooden vessels as I thought best adapted for with him, stated the condition of the Admiral, the purpose, were immediately ordered to attack and wished to know what was to be done with the ram, not only with their guns, but bows on him. Fleet Surgeon Palmer, who was on board at full speed, and then began one of the fiercest the Hartford, during the action, commisernaval combats on record.
ating the sufferings of the wounded, suggested The Monongahela, Commander Strong, was the that those of both sides be sent to Pensacola, first vessel that struck her, and in doing so car- where they could be properly cared for. I there. ried away his own iron prow, together with the fore addressed a note to Brigadier-General R. L. cutwater, without apparently doing her adversary Page, commanding Fort Morgan, informing him much injury. The Lackawanna, Captain Mar- that Admiral Buchanan and others of the Tenchand, was the next vessel to strike her, which she nessee had been wounded, and desiring to know did at full speed; but though her stem was cut whether he would permit one of our vessels, and crushed to the plank ends for the distance under a flag of truce, to convey them, with or of three feet above the water-edge, to five feet be without our wounded, to Pensacola, on the unlow, the only perceptible effect on the ram was derstanding that the vessel should take out none to give her a heavy list.
but the wounded, and bring nothing back that I'he Hartford was the third vessel which struck she did not take out. This was acceded to by her, but, as the Tennessee quickly shifted her General Page, and the Metacomet proceeded on helm, the blow was a glancing one, and, as she this mission of humanity. rasped along our side, we poured our whole port I inclose herewith the correspondence with broadside of nine-inch solid shot within ten feet that officer, (marked numbers one, two, three, of her casemate.
and four.) I forward also the reports (marked The Monitors worked slowly, but delivered numbers five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven, their fire as opportunity offered. The Chicka- twelve, thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, sixteen, sevensaw succeeded in getting under her stern, and a teen, eighteen, nineteen, twenty, and twenty-one) fifteen-inch shot from the Manhattan broke of the commanding officers of the vessels who par