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sides was comparatively ineffective. But the armed steam-boats ventured nearer, and, with their rifled guns, killed and wounded several men on board the Minneso ta. On her part, she sent a shot through the boiler of but retires as night one of them. Night was coming on; the Merrimack did not venture to lie out in the Roads; so, expecting another easy victory in the morn ing, she retired at 7 P.M., with her consorts, behind Sewall's Point.

comes on.




The Minnesota still lay fast on the mud-bank. The recoil of her own firing had forced her harder release the Minne on. Attempts were made at high tide, and, indeed, all through the night, to get her off, but in vain. The steam frigate Roanoke, disabled some months previously by the breaking of her shaft, and the sailing frigate St. Lawrence, had both likewise been aground, but had now gone down the Roads.

At nine o'clock that night Ericsson's new iron-clad turArrival of the tur- ret-ship, the Monitor, reached Fortress Monret-ship Monitor. roe from New York. Every exertion had been made by her inventor to get her out in time to meet the Merrimack; and the Confederates, finding from their spies in New York that she would probably be ready, put a double force on their frigate, and worked night and day. It is said that this extra labor gained that one day in which the Merrimack destroyed the Cumberland and the Congress.

The Monitor was commanded by Lieutenant John L. Worden. A dreadful passage of three days

had almost worn out her crew. The sea had swept over her decks; the turret was often the only part above water. The tiller-rope was at one time thrown off the wheel. The draft-pipe had been choked by the pouring down of the waves. The men were half suf focated. The fires had been repeatedly extinguished.

Her dreadful seavoyage.




Ventilation had, however, been obtained through the tur ret. Throughout the previous afternoon Worden had heard the sound of the cannonading. He delayed but a few minutes at the Fortress, and soon after midnight had anchored the Monitor alongside the Minnesota (March 9). Day broke a clear and beautiful Sunday. The flag of the Cumberland was still flying; the corpses of her defenders were floating about on the water. The Merrimack approached to renew her attack. She ran down toward the Fortress, and then came up the channel through which the Minnesota had passed. Worden at once took his station at the peepholes of his pilot-house, laid the Monitor before her ene She is assailed by my, and gave the fire of his two 11-inch guns. The shot of each was 168 pounds' weight. Catesby Jones, who had taken command of the Merrimack, Buchanan having been wounded the previ ous day, saw at once that he had on his hands a very dif ferent antagonist from those of yesterday. The turret was but a very small mark to fire at, nine feet by twenty; the shot that struck it glanced off. One bolt only from a rifle-gun struck squarely, penetrating into the iron; "it then broke short off, and left its head sticking in." For the most part, the shot flew over the low deck, missing their aim.

the Monitor.

The Merrimack resumes her attack.


Five times the Merrimack tried to run the Monitor Attempts to run the down, and at each time received, at a few Monitor down. feet distance, the fire of the 11-inch guns. In her movements at one moment she got aground, and the light-drawing Monitor, steaming round her, tried at every promising point to get a shot into her. Her armor at last began to start and bend.

Unable to shake off the Monitor or to do her any inHer conflict with jury, the Merrimack now renewed her at

the Minnesota.

tempt on the frigate Minnesota, receiving




from her a whole broadside which struck squarely. "It was enough," said Captain Van Brunt, who commanded the frigate, "to have blown out of the water any wooden ship in the world." In her turn, she sent from her rifled bow-gun a shell through the Minnesota's side: it exploded within her, tearing four of her rooms into one, and setting her on fire. Another shell burst the boiler of the tug-boat Dragon, which lay alongside the Minnesota. The frigate was firing on the iron-clad solid shot as fast as she could.


Once more the Monitor intervened between them, compelling her antagonist to change position, in doing which the Merrimack again grounded, and again received a whole broadside from the Minnesota. The blows she was receiving were beginning to tell upon her. As soon She retreats, pursued as she could get clear, she ran down the bay, followed by the Monitor. Suddenly she turned round, and attempted to run her tormentor down. Her beak grated on the Monitor's deck, and was wrenched. The turret-ship stood unharmed a blow like that which had sent the Cumberland to the bottom; she merely glided out from under her antagonist, and in the act of so doing gave her a shot while almost in contact. It seemed to crush in her armor.

the victory.

The Monitor now hauled off for the purpose of hoistThe Monitor gains ing more shot into her turret. Catesby Jones thought he had silenced her, and that he might make another attempt on the Minnesota. He, however, changed his course as the Monitor steamed up, and it was seen that the Merrimack was sagging down at her stern. She made the best of her way to Craney Island. The battle was over; the turreted Monitor had driven her from the field and won the victory.

The Minnesota had fired 247 solid shot, 282 shells, and more than ten tons of powder. The Monitor fired 41



The last shot

shot, and was struck 22 times. The last shell wounds Worden. fired by the Merrimack at her struck her pilot-house opposite the peep-hole, through which Worden at that moment was looking. He was knocked down senseless, and blinded by the explosion. When consciousness returned, the first question this brave officer asked was, "Did we save the Minnesota ?"


The shattering of the pilot-house was the greatest inInjuries received by jury that the Monitor received. One of the iron logs, nine inches by twelve inches thick, was broken in two.

the Monitor.

On board the Merrimack two were killed and nineteen wounded. She lost her iron prow, her starboard anchor, and all her boats; her armor was dislocated and damaged; she leaked considerably; her steam-pipe and smoke-stack were riddled; the muz zles of two of her guns were shot away; the woodwork round one of the ports was set on fire at every discharge.

In his report on the battle, Buchanan states that in fifteen minutes after the action began he Buchanan's report. had run the Cumberland down; that he dis tinctly heard the crash when she was struck, and that the fire his ship received did her some injury; that there was great difficulty in managing the Merrimack when she was near the mud, and that this was particularly the case in getting into position to attack the Congress. It was while firing the red-hot shot and incendiary shell by which that ship was burnt that he was himself wounded.

Injuries of the

of this battle.

This engagement excited the most profound interest Important results throughout the civilized world. It seemed as if the day of wooden navies was over. Nor was it alone the superiority of iron as against wood that was settled by this combat; it showed that a monitor was a better construction than a mailed broad




side ship, and that inclined armor was inferior to a turret.

On the invasion of the Peninsula by McClellan, the Destruction of the Confederate government determined on the Merrimack. abandonment of Norfolk (p. 383), and the Merrimack was blown up by them (May 11th). A few days subsequently, the Monitor, with the Galena and Naugatuck, made an ineffectual attack on Fort Darling, Attack on Fort but it was found that the turret guns could not be elevated sufficiently to be of advantage. Toward the close of the year she was ordered to Beaufort, South Carolina, and foundered in a storm off Cape Hatteras.


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