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lent quality, and the Confederates lay by two days supplying their steamer with necessaries. The whaleship was then burned, and Waddill landed for a day at Tristan and made arrangements with the native Governor to receive the Edward's crew, most of whom were Sandwich Islanders.
Soon after the departure from Tristan it was found that a serious accident had happened to the propeller shaft of the Shenandoah and it became necessary to seek some considerable port for repairs. Cape Town was nearest, but Commander Waddill preferred making Melbourne, if possible, the course thither lying nearer the more frequented tracks of the United States vessels. The voyage was marked by the capture of several merchantmen.
The character of the Shenandoah was known at Melbourne, and she dropped anchor in Hobson's Bay, cheered and surrounded by the steamers in the haven. The next day the work of repairing the ship was begun, and during the delay several of the crew embraced the opportunity to desert, all of them being men who had joined the Shenandoah from captured ships. The attempt of Waddell to pursue and bring back these men was obstructed by the United States Consul, as well as by the Australian authorities. The Shenandoah, in a fortified British port, was in no position to resist these acts, and on February 18th, the repairs and coaling having been completed, the port was cleared.
The delay of the steamer at Melbourne had operated against success for the Shenandoah in the South Pacific. The whaling fleets of that ocean had received warning of the presence of the privateer, and had departed for sheltering ports of the Arctic Ocean. Learning from a passing steamer that some United States whaling vessels were to be found in a harbor of the Caroline Islands, Waddell directed his course thither, reaching the islands early in April.
An English pilot, who had been living there for years, volunteered his services to the Confederate, and brought the steamer to anchor in sight of four vessels flying the American flag. The flag of the Shenandoah was not yet displayed. After anchorage was secured, four armed boats were dispatched with orders to capture the vessels and bring their officers, ships' papers, log-book, instruments for navigation and whaling charts to the Shenandoah. After the boats left the steamer the Confederate flag was hoisted and a gun fired. This signal, announcing the character of the warship, brought down the American flags and the seizure was immediately made. Waddell
remained some days in this harbor, where he made friends with the native "King," a savage.
The course of the Shenandoah was thence for many days toward the north and beset with violent storms. Finally, the snow-covered Kuril Islands were sighted, and on May 31st the Sea of Okhotsh was entered under the coast of Kamschatka. A few days later the whaling bark Abigail, of New Bedford, was overtaken, captured and burned. The Shenandoah continued as far north as the mouth of Chijinsk Bay, but being forced away by the ice, she stole along the coast of Siberia on her still hunt, amid frequent storms and great danger from floating ice. On June 14th, no ships having been sighted, Waddell changed his course toward the Aleutian Islands, entered Behring Sea on the next day, and almost immediately fell in with a couple of New Bedford whalers. One of them, the William Thompson, was the largest out of New England, and valued at $60,000. These ships were burned.
The following day five vessels were sighted near an ice floe. The Confederates hoisted the American flag, bore down upon them, and ordered the nearest, the Milo, of New Bedford, to produce her ship's papers. Her captain complied, but was enraged to find himself thus entrapped. He declared the war was over. Waddell demanded documentary evidence which the Captain could not produce. His vessel was seized, and the Shenandoah started after the companion ships with the usual result. For several days following, the Shenandoah had things her own way, and the prizes were frequent and valuable. She struck fleet after fleet of whaling ships, only to consign. them and their contents to the flames. On June 26th alone, five ships, valued collectively at $160,000, were destroyed, and a day or two later, she reached the climax of her career, burning within eleven hours eleven ships, worth in the aggregate nearly $500,000.
The Shenandoah was now overcrowded with prisoners, most of whom were afterwards transferred to passing ships. Having cruised around daringly for a week or two longer, and sighting no more ships, she turned her prow southward again. Her depredations were at an end, for early in August, she spoke the English bark Barricouta, from San Francisco to Liverpool, and from her received conclusive evidence of the end of the war between the States. Commander Waddell could not persuade himself to enter an American port, and for some time aimlessly scoured the seas. Later it was determined to seek an English port, and on November 5, 1865, the Shenandoah entered St. George's channel, having sailed 23,000
miles without seeing land. On November 6th, she steamed up the Mersey, and the Confederate flag having been hauled down, Waddell sent a communication to the English Minister of Foreign Affairs, Earl Russell, placing his ship at the disposal of the British Government. Through Earl Russell the vessel was transferred to the jurisdiction of the American Minister, Charles Francis Adams, who caused her to be conveyed to this country, to be dismantled.
Such is the record of the Shenandoah. She was actually cruising for Union property but eight months, and during that time she captured and destroyed vessels to the value of more than $1,100,000, and the Union had never been able to direct a blow against her. She had visited every ocean except the Antarctic, covered a distance of 58,000 statute miles. The last gun in defence of the South was fired in the Arctic Ocean from her deck on July 22, 1865.
[Sunday News, Charleston, S. C., May 2, 1897.]
THE SIGNAL SERVICE CORPS.
A TRIBUTE TO THEIR ARDUOUS AND INVALUABLE
An Address by A. W. Taft, before Camp Sumter C. V., Charleston, S. C., May 1, 1897.
Commander and Comrades:
To-night you have invited me to respond in behalf of the Signal Corps, being the senior officer of that body connected with your camp. With great pleasure do I accept the compliment, for it cannot but be a matter of pride to be chosen as the representative of such a command, a body composed of men selected from the different branches of the service, not only for their intelligence, but also for the complete confidence that could be placed in them, holding only the humble rank of privates, but what greater compliment can be paid to any man than to say of him that he had been selected for his intelligence and reliability from the ranks of the Confederate army,
whose merits have won the admiration of all nations? I can also add that members of the Signal Corps, although only detailed men, were held in such esteem that to them were always extended the honors due to commissioned officers. Thrown, however, in daily intercourse with my brother survivors of the "Lost Cause," I cannot but recognize the fact that by many of those, who, with musket on shoulder or sabre by side, bore the heat and burden of many a hard fought battle, we are classed among those non-combatants, who, occupying what were termed "bomb-proof" positions, would now pose as veterans, and how can I better use the limited space of time allotted to me than by bringing to your attention certain facts that may tend to remove that erroneous impression?
The members of the Signal Corps, like those of all other commands, were assigned to duty at the various stations at which their services would be most valuable, some comparatively free from danger, while others were exposed and dangerous, that a term of service thereat, by any soldier, can be looked on as a certificate of bravery. You have passed a highly merited eulogy on our lamented Comrade Thomas Huguenin, whose highest honor is that he commanded at Fort Sumter, but let me call to your attention the fact that three members of the Signal Corps were constantly there on duty, sharing not only the dangers and trials of Huguenin, but also of Rhett, Elliott, Harleston, Mitchell and of all those other heroes who there did serve, and of whose records we, as brother soldiers, are so proud.
"FORT SUMTER STILL HOLDS OUT."
By their side the signal officer stood, and beneath crumbling wall and the midst of bursting shells, with flag in hand by day and torch by night, they sent to this seemingly doomed city the glad tidings: "Fort Sumpter still holds out." When you honor the memories of those heroes, who for their country, gave up their lives, forget not the brave boy Huger, who, upon her ramparts, shed his life blood, as nobly performing his duty to his country and as willingly giving his life to the cause as anyone of them all.
Are there any whom you hold in higher esteem than the officers and men of the navy? Do not forget the fact that two members of the Signal Corps, stationed on each iron-clad, stood ready at all times to share the dangers of the gallant Ingraham, Tucker and their men.
Again, on Morris Island we find the Signal Corps, and on them
devolved the duty of keeping that brave garrison in communication with the outer world. You who, like myself, experienced the dangers and trials of that siege, can indeed appreciate their services, and testify to the bravery and coolness with which the members of the Signal Corps there bore themselves in the midst of dangers that caused the bravest to tremble, standing nobly at their post, and only leaving the island with the rear guard, at the evacuation.
There were also members of the corps, who at other points, not so much exposed, did even more valuable service to our cause. I refer to those who day and night read the signals as they passed from station to station of the United States Army and Navy. To them we owe the preservation of Sumter, Johnson, Gregg and Wagner, on several occasions, those forts being forewarned of attacks to be made, and consequently prepared to resist the same. I have so far spoken only of the services of the corps in the siege of this city, having been connected only with this and the Signal Corps of the Army of Tennessee, and I know that my time is limited, and there are but few of those present who were at any time connected with the latter army, but will add that to demonstrate that the members of the Signal Corps bore themselves with equal bravery on other fields, and did not occupy bomb-proof places. History tells us that when the beloved Stonewall Jackson fell a signal officer caught him in his arms and another bit the dust by his side.
THE DEFENCE OF MORRIS ISLAND.
Such, my comrades, are the facts. I would submit for your consideration, still, for fear they may be received by some as the statements of one interested, I shall trespass on your patience while I quote from the published accounts of the defence of Morris Island. The writer in describing the attempt to blow up the Ironsides uses the following words:
"The new Ironsides was singled for destruction. One of the Signal Corps had been stationed at Battery Gregg, and another at Wagner, each with keen eyes, watching their respective lines of vision. At the electric key stood Captain Langdon Cheves, with eyes bent upon both stations, so that as the flags waved in concert, indicating the fatal moment when the Ironsides should be over the torpedo, to apply the spark and do the deed. Slowly the Ironsides steamed around, delivering one terrific broadside after another. Ever