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recognized by the Government. Meantime, pending these trials, the Confederate Government ordered the selection of a number of men from the Richmond prisons, by lot, to be dealt with in the same manner as the privateers should be dealt with. The choice fell on Colonel Corcoran, of the New York Sixty-ninth regiment, and others captured at Bull Run. The Federal Government, under these circumstances, delayed the execution of these prisoners.

While these events were taking place, R. B. Forbes and others, of Boston, applied for authority to arm the propella Pembroke, about to sail for China, as a privateer. The Secretary replied, that the power to do so might be found under the act of August 5th, 1861, empowering the President to authorize "commanders of any suitable vessels to subdue, seize," &c. It does not appear, however, that any vessels were armed under that authority.

The proclamation of the President in relation to treating privateers as pirates created much sensation in England, and on May 16th a debate on the question took place in the House of Lords. The Earl of Derby said that privateers were not pirates by the law of nations, and no one nation could make it so. "He knew the United States treated the privateers as mere rebels, and liable to the penalties of treason. That was not the doctrine in this country, because we have declared that they have belligerent rights. The Northern States could not claim belligerent rights for themselves, and deal with the other parties as rebels." Lord Brougham said, "it was very clear that privateering was not piracy." Lord Kingsdown said the United States dealt with the privateers as rebels. "He believed the enforcement of that doctrine would be an act of barbarity which would produce an outery throughout the civilized world." The English Government, however, took no active steps in the matter, and the question soon resolved itself into one respecting the exchange of prisoners.

The question of exchange of prisoners early forced itself upon the notice of the Government, which had the undoubted right to punish those captured as traitors, taken in the act of levying war upon the Government. To pursue this course, however, would provoke retribution, and would cause the war to degenerate into a savage contest. On the other hand, the Government hesitated to systematize the exchange of prisoners according to the laws of war, lest it might be construed into an acknowledgment of the belligerent rights of the Confederate States. The necessity of exchange became, however, urgent. The friends of those who were languishing in Southern prisons were kept anxious by the rumors of barbarities there committed, and were clamorous that something should be done for their relief. By effecting an exchange of prisoners, no rights of sovereignty are conceded. There is a well-defined distinction recognized by the United States Courts, between necessary intercourse and admission of rights. By exchanging prisoners nothing is conceded but what is patent to the world, viz, that active war exists, and that it should be conducted by a Christian people according to the usages of civilized nations.

Previous to the battle of Bull Run, the number of prisoners on

either side was not large. By that disaster a large number of Northern troops became prisoners. It was then that the threat of retaliation was held out in respect to the privateers. In view of this fact, the question of punishment could no longer be entertained. The Confederates had, from time to time, released prisoners on parole, and, in an informal manner, numbers were from time to time discharged on either side. On the 3d of September, a formal interchange of prisoners took place between General Pillow and Colonel Wallace. This was followed, on the 12th of October, by a proposition from General Polk, commanding at Columbus, Kentucky, to General Grant, to exchange prisoners according to the terms of the exchange between General Pillow and Colonel Wallace. General Grant did not think proper to comply, on the ground that he recognized no "Southern Confederacy." On the 23d of October, General McClernand, understanding the necessities of the case, sent Colonel Buford to General Polk, offering to release three Confederate prisoners. General Polk wished to make a general arrangement, but Colonel Buford having no authority, General Polk released, unconditionally, sixteen Union prisoners on this occasion. The treaty made by Fremont with Price, on the first of November, provided for the exchange of prisoners, in terms as follows:

"And the parties so named are hereby authorized, whenever applied to for that purpose, to negotiate for the exchange of any and all persons who may hereafter be taken prisoners of war and released on parole; such exchanges to be made upon the plan heretofore approved and acted upon, to wit, grade for grade, or two officers of lower grade as an equivalent in rank for one of a higher grade, as shall be thought just and equitable."

This was repudiated by General Hunter on the 7th of November. Early in 1862 commissioners were appointed by the Federal Government to proceed to the Confederate States, and examine into the condition of the Union prisoners. They were refused admission, but succeeded in entering upon negotiations which ultimately led to the adoption of a regular cartel.


Improved Efficiency of the Navy.-Expeditions.-Port Royal.-The Fleet.-The Assault.-Troops Landed.-Proclamation.-Stone Fleet.-Ship Island.-General Butler-Proclamation of General Phelps.-Burnside's Expedition.-Fort Pickens. -Galveston.-Combat on the Mississippi.-Effectiveness of the Blockade.

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WE have seen in a former chapter, in relation to the tactical aspect of the present war, that the South, occupying a central position, and the North the circumference of the theatre of operations, it was necessary to close the circle by occupying the leading points of the seacoast with strong detachments. This operation was long delayed through the want of a sufficient number of available vessels in the navy, at a time when a large number were required to maintain an efficient blockade over an extended coast line. As soon, however, as a

moderate blockading squadron was supplied, attention was turned to the organization of a series of expeditions, having for their object the capture of the best harbors on the coast, and the occupation of extended tracts of country in their vicinity.

When General Wool took command at Fortress Monroe, August 13th, he found preparations in progress for the expedition to Hatteras Inlet, of which the details are given in Chapter XI., and the results of which were the occupation of that point by the Union forces, on the 29th of August. A fortification called Fort Oregon, at Ocracoke Inlet, fifteen miles below Hatteras, was abandoned by the Confederates, and destroyed by the Union troops. On the 1st of October, the steam-tug Fanny, with her two brass guns, and thirty-five of the New York Ninth Volunteers, together with a considerable quantity of stores, was captured by the Confederates. On the 4th, the Twentieth Indiana, stationed at Chicamacomico, thirty miles above Hatteras, were attacked, and a considerable number of them made prisoners. The next day, the Monticello and Susquehanna ran down and shelled the Confederates, killing a number, and driving the remainder to their boats.

The Hatteras expedition having proved successful, the United States Government undertook a larger and more formidable one. The finest harbor on the Southern coast is that of Port Royal, South Carolinaa broad estuary, formed by the junction of Broad and Port Royal Rivers, and Archer's Creek, and their debouchure into the Atlantic. The interlacing of these and other rivers has formed a large group of islands, of which Hilton Head, Hunting, St. Helena, Paris, and Port Royal are the principal. This harbor is nearly equidistant from Charleston on the north and Savannah on the south, with both of which cities it has an interior water communication for small vessels. The parish of which these islands form a part is the richest cotton district in South Carolina. The population was about forty thousand, of whom thirty-two thousand were blacks. The chief production is the long-staple cotton, known as sea island, used for the first class of cotton goods, and produced only along the coasts of South Carolina, Georgia, and Texas. Rice is also largely cultivated. The village of Beaufort, on Port Royal Island, and the adjacent islands, formed the summer residence of many of the wealthy planters of South Carolina. This har bor, after consultation with Captain Dupont,* of the navy, was fixed upon as the best point for a basis of operations on the Southern coast, and preparations on a very extensive scale for an expedition thither were at once commenced. After many delays the expedition finally took its departure from Fortress Monroe, October 29th. It consisted of fifty vessels, including thirty-three transports; the naval command being under Flag-officer Dupont. The military commander was

*Samnel F. Dupont was a native of New Jersey, where he was born in 1803. He entered the navy in 1815, and in 1848 served under Commo dore Shubrick in California, where with one hundred men he attacked and routed five hundred Mexicans. He was appointed captain in 1856, and commanded the Minnesota on the China woast in 1858-9. In 1861 he took charge of the

Philadelphia navy-yard, and in the ensuing summer was put in coinmand of the South Atlantic blockading squadron. On October 7th, after a gallant action, he captured the rebel forts in Port Royal Harbor, for which service he was, in August, 1862, commissioned a rear-admiral. He commanded the iron-clads in the attack on Fort Sumter, April 7, 1863, and in June was relieved.

Major-General T. W. Sherman, and the troops comprised three brigades, numbering fifteen thousand men, under Brigadier-Generals Egbert L. Vielé, Isaac I. Stevens, and Horatio G. Wright.

These were accompanied by Hamilton's (late Sherman's) battery of six rifled guns, and a battalion of volunteer engineers. Soon after the fleet left Hampton Roads, the weather became unsettled, and the wind increased in violence until on Friday, November 1st, it blew almost a hurricane from the southeast, scattering the ships so widely, that on Saturday morning but one of the whole fleet was in sight from the deck of the flag-ship, the Wabash. On Sunday, the wind having moderated, the vessels began to reappear. During the gale the Governor and Peerless, transports, sank, and the Isaac Smith threw her armament overboard to save the vessel. Only seven lives, however, were lost. On the 4th, twenty-five vessels anchored off Port Royal bar, the channel through which was immediately sounded, and buoyed out. For the protection of the harbor the rebels had erected at Hilton Head, on its Southern side, Fort Walker, a strong earthwork, mounting twenty-three guns of the heaviest calibre, some of them rifled, and several of them imported from England during the war. On the north side of the harbor, and distant about two and a half miles from Fort Walker, was Fort Beauregard, at Bay Point, mounting twenty guns, and supported by an outwork half a mile distant. About two miles above the forts, where Port Royal River joins the Broad, was a fleet of six or seven rebel gunboats, under Commodore Tatnall. There was · also a strong land force in the forts, under General Drayton. Under the circumstances it was determined to reduce Fort Walker first, and on the 7th of November, at nine o'clock, the Wabash signalled to the fleet to form in order of battle in two columns. The flag-ship led the main column, and the Bienville the starboard column, having her position on the Susquehanna's starboard quarter, and maintaining it during the entire action. The ships were drawn up in the following order :

Main Column.




Starboard Column.




Thomas W. Sherman was born in Rhode Island. 1816; graduated at West Point in 1836 as second-Heutenant Third Artillery; first-lieutenant, 1838; captain in May, 1846; served in Mexico, and was made major in February, 1847, for gallant conduct at Buena Vista. He was appointed lieutenant-colonel of the Fifth Artillery




As the fleet moved up towards Fort Beauregard the rebel batteries on both sides of the river opened fire on the head of the column, with heavy guns of long range. At ten minutes past ten the Wabash fired simultaneously on both Forts Walker and Beauregard, sending a broadside at each. Each volley fell in front of the batteries, and ploughed deep furrows in the sand. Followed by her consorts, the

in May, 1861; led a brigade in the first battle of Bull Run, and in the succeeding October_took command of the troops in the Port Royal Expe. dition. In March, 1862, he was superseded and ordered to the Southwest. He took part in the Port Hudson campaign, under General Banks, and lost a leg in the assault of May 27th.

Wabash then turned southward, and, sailing in an ellipse, delivered her fire as she passed slowly down within six hundred yards of Fort Walker, deliberately, and without losing the range. She also approached the shore as closely as the soundings would admit. These were given regularly, as upon an ordinary occasion; signals were made continually, and the fire fell upon the fort with all the cool precision of target practice. The second column, meanwhile, had also passed up on the left side of the channel, pouring broadsides into Fort Beauregard, and then taking a station to cut off Tatnall's fleet from any participation in the fight, and at the same time to keep up a flanking fire on Fort Walker. Three circuits of the channel were taken by the main column, at each of which a broadside was opened upon the fort opposite. In this way the whole force of the fleet was brought to bear upon the enemy with irresistible effect, each vessel delivering its shot as it came in front of the fort, and each, by constantly shifting its position, baffling the enemy's aim. The enemy was by no means inactive, and offered a stubborn resistance, but at the end of the third circuit the guns of the forts were mostly disabled. The flag-officer almost simultaneously received tidings to that effect from several sources, and about 3 P. M. the rebels struck their flag. The signal to cease firing was at once hoisted, at precisely a quarter to three o'clock, the bombardment having been nearly five hours in progress.

The flag-ship lowered a boat and sent it ashore, carrying a flag of truce in the bow, to inquire if the enemy had surrendered. Commander John Rodgers, a passenger on the Wabash, who had come down to join his vessel, the Flag, off Charleston, and had been acting during the fight as aide to Commodore Dupont, was assigned the duty of taking the flag ashore. He planted the American ensign upon the deserted ramparts, and another and larger flag was afterwards displayed upon the flag-staff of a building a few rods to the left, where the rebel standard had waved during the combat, and whence it had just been taken down. The troops were immediately landed, and took possession of the forts. The Federal loss was eight killed and twentythree wounded. The Confederate loss was not ascertained. Fortyeight cannon were taken. The village of Beaufort was soon after taken possession of by the Federal forces without opposition, the inhabitants mostly retiring at their approach.

After landing and taking possession of the forts, General Sherman issued the following proclamation :


"In obedience to the orders of the President of the United States of America, I have landed on your shores with a small force of National troops. The dictates of a duty which under the Constitution I owe to a great sovereign State, and to a proud and hospitable people among whom I have passed some of the pleasantest days of my life, prompt me to proclaim that we have come among you with no feelings of personal animosity; no desire to harm your citizens, destroy your property, or interfere with any of your lawful laws, rights, or your social and local institutions, beyond what the causes herein briefly alluded to may render unavoidable.

"Citizens of South Carolina: The civilized world stands appalled at the course you are pursuing !-appalled at the crime you are committing against your own mother; the best, the most enlightened, and heretofore the most prosperous of nations. You

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