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Page) there was a shell striking about once in a minute, At this time
the Pocahontas, which had towed a transport ship in, let her go, and came up to
join in the sport—sport for us, but death to them. At half past twelve o'clock
the little gunboat Mercury, Acting Master S. G. Martin, came tip close to us and
stood right in toward the battery, and after taking a position she opened fire
with her thirty-pounder Parrott gun, throwing in shell with great precision. Her
conduct was brilliant in the extreme, and attracted the attention of the entire
The rebel battery is badly
damaged, and the houses and tents bear the marks of
shells, and it looks as if
there was a stampede in the rebel camp. At five minutes of two o'clock the
Wabash and her consorts are in position to advance; but they remain quiet and
let the gun-boats pepper away at the battery, which only replies with one gun,
which looks as if they were only firing so as to deceive its while they embark
their forces. At two o'clock we weigh anchor, and go still closer in, feeling
assured that they have become pretty well used up, and will not or can not
The transports now launch their
surf-boats, nearly one hundred in number, and place the crews in them, all ready
to commence disembarking the troops. At half past two o'clock the Wabash came
down and fired one gun, and, to our surprise, there was no reply to it, although
she waited for some moments. Signals were now made to the vessels, and the
firing ceased entirely. The ships got in order, and, to our surprise, prepared
At twenty minutes of three
o'clock a boat—the whale-boat of the Wabash—was manned, and, with a white flag
flying over the bow and Commander John Rodgers in the stern, started for the
shore. I can assure you that every stroke of the oars was watched by thousands
of anxious people. She strikes the beach. Captain Rodgers, borne on the backs of
true and trusty tars, with the
Stars and Stripes floating over his head and a
large ensign, goes on shore, and at three o'clock precisely the Stars and
Stripes wave in triumph over South Carolina soil and a deserted rebel battery. A
glorious and brilliant naval victory has been won. All honor to the gallant
seamen of the
United States Navy !
With regard to FORT WALKER he
The armament of the merle, which
was of the latest patterns, was as follows : Thirteen 32-pounders, two siege
12-inch guns, two rifled 8-inch. one 10-inch Columbiad, two carronades, and one
8-inch Columbiad. Three of them had been dismounted, but were uninjured, and can
readily be mounted on new carriages. In the magazines an immense quantity of
shot, shell, powder, fixed ammunition, etc., were found.
The enemy left Fort Walker so
hurriedly that their private effects—indeed, every thing—were wholly abandoned,
and we found every thing just as they left them. Dinner tables were set, and
good food ready for the hungry fighters, and all left to us. The amount of stuff
found was astonishing, and all was taken possession of by our forces, and, with
the exception of a few articles taken as mementos of the occasion, every thing
is safe. Quite a number of elegant swords and pistols, saddles, etc., were
found, and distributed among the deserving.
The effects of our fire were to
be seen on every hand in the work. On the line along the front three guns were
dismounted by the enfilading fire of our ship. One carriage had been struck by a
large shell and shivered to pieces, dismounting the heavy gun mounted upon it,
and sending the splinters flying in all direction, with terrific force. Between
the gun and the foot of the parapet was a large pool of blood, mingled with
brain, fragments of skull, and pieces of flesh, evidently from the face, as
portions of whiskers still clung to it. This shot must have done horrible
execution, as other portions of human beings were found all about it. Another
carriage to the right was broken to pieces, and the guns on the water fronts
were rendered useless by the enfilading fire from the gun-boats on the left
flank. Their scorching fire of shell, which swept with resistless fury and
deadly effect across this long water pond, where the enemy had placed their
heaviest metal, en barbette, without taking the precaution to place traverses
between the guns, did as much as any thing to drive the rebels from their works,
in the hurried manner I have before described. The works were plowed up by the
shot and shell so badly as to make immediate repairs necessary.
All the houses and many of the
tents about the work were perforated and torn by flying shell, and hardly a
light of glass could be found intact, in any building where a shell exploded.
The trees in the vicinity of the object of our fire showed marks of heavy
visitations. Every thing, indeed bore the marks of ruin. No wonder, then, that
the rebels beat a hasty retreat. I can, and do, cheerfully bear testimony to the
gallant and courageous manner in which the rebels maintained their position
under a hot fire, and fought at their guns when many would have fled.
Their loss in killed and wounded
must have been heavy. About fifteen have been buried today by the marines; two
or three of their wounded were found, the remainder are undoubtedly carried with
the retreating forces.
Of the METHOD OF SIGNALING our
artist writes :
STEAMSHIP "ORIENTAL," OFF
November 11, 1861.
I send you inclosed a sketch of
Signal Officer Lieutenant Howard in the act of communicating with the frigate
Wabash. In the day time signals are made by means of a flag, either a white
ground and crimson centre, or a black ground and white centre. In the night
torches are used, protected from the wind by a peculiar arrangement of strips of
copper, resembling the fingers of a man's hand. To each signal officer there are
attached two sergeants who make the motions with the signal apparatus, the
officer directing. The officers are equipped at the expense of the United
States, drawing field-glasses (night and day), telescopes, horses, and various
other things. I send this with other sketches at the earliest opportunity. The
entrance to Port Royal is in the middle of the picture.
Of GENERAL WRIGHT'S HEAD-QUARTERS
he says :
HILTON HEAD SOUTH CAROLINA,
November 8, 1861.
I send you herewith a sketch of
the head-quarters of General Wright, with its surroundings, which, as you see,
is a picturesque as well as an interesting subject. This old house, formerly the
mansion of a planter named William Pope, was, on the occupation of this place by
the rebels, immediately confiscated, and used as the head-quarters of the
General-commanding, Drayton. During the bombardment the building was the
recipient of a number of iron favors from the big guns of our little gun-boats.
After the helter-skelter retreat of the chivalry it was occupied by General
Wright. The small buildings surrounding it, formerly used as negro-quarters,
were found filled with commissary stores of all descriptions, the encampment in
front and around it being that of the Ninth South Carolina Regiment, commanded
by Colonel William Hayward, a brother-in-law of Hon. Francis B. Cutting, of New York. It is now occupied by the Fourth New Hampshire Volunteers. It will be
perceived by my sketch that "contrabands" have already begun to make their
appearance, and as evening closed many dark objects were visible, and the cry is
still they come. Their delight is unbounded at the prospect of future freedom,
and their method of expressing it ludicrous.
The following brief biographical
sketches will introduce THE MILITARY AND NAVAL COMMANDERS to our readers :
Major-General Thomas W.
Sherman—in charge of the land force of the expedition—was born in Rhode Island,
graduated at the West Point Military Academy in 1836, standing number eighteen
in a class of forty-six cadets—an unusually large proportion—and was appointed
Second Lieutenant in the Third United States Artillery in July, 1836. In March,
1837, he became Assistant Commissary of Subsistence, and in the same month of
the following year was promoted to a first lieutenancy. Just at the breaking out
of the troubles with Mexico he was promoted to a captaincy, his commission
bearing date May 28, 1846. He served with distinction previously in the Florida
wars, and accompanied General Taylor to Mexico, rendering himself conspicuous
for the zeal and efficiency with which he performed his duty. He was breveted
Major for his gallant and meritorious conduct at the
battle of Buena Vista,
February 23, 1847. Since the close of the
Mexican war he has been on duty in
various parts of the
country, always rendering
efficient service. In August, 1857, while on duty at the Minnesota agency, in
the Indian country, he was distinguished for the prudence and firmness with
which he acted in averting a war with the Mississippi tribes of the
the formation of the Fifth Artillery he was appointed Lieutenant-Colonel of the
regiment, a portion of which was engaged in the
Bull Run fight, under the name
of Sherman's, and subsequently Ayres's battery. He was made a Brigadier-General
May 17, 1861.
Samuel F. Dupont, the
commander of the naval forces of the expedition, is a native of the State of
Delaware, and received his appointment into the navy from that State. His
original entry into the service of his country was on the 19th of December,
1815; he has been, therefore, nearly forty-six years in the service, and his
forty-sixth anniversary has won more glory and raised him higher in the
estimation of the people, both at home and abroad, than all previous ones. Up to
the present time Commodore Dupont has spent nearly twenty-two years on sea,
eight and a half years in active duty on shore, and the balance of his time has
been unemployed. His present commission bears date September 14, 1855. He was
last at sea in May, 1859, and since that time he has been commandant of the Navy
Yard at Philadelphia, where his kindness of manner, together with his strict
discipline, won for him many friends.
Commodore Dupont is a man a
little past what is usually termed the prime of life, although possessed of all
the vigor, bodily strength, and ambition that usually characterize younger men.
In his personal appearance the Commodore is a person that would at once attract
The following letter, published
in the Herald, will show how narrow an escape the "WINFIELD SCOTT" had of being
lost on the way to Port Royal :
The gale commenced on Friday west
of Cape Fear, blowing hard; at three o'clock P. M., the ship laboring hard, saw
steamboat Governor, with flag of distress at mast-head; could not go to her
assistance ; had to keep the vessel's head to the sea. At five o'clock, the gale
still increasing, and the ship laboring very hard. Up to ten o'clock the sea was
running higher than the vessel ; every sea that struck her seemed to twist her
like a piece of whalebone. Thunder and lightning and pitch dark up to five
o'clock. Captain Edie was on deck all the time, giving orders to the men at the
wheel. At one o'clock Saturday morning, five feet of water in the hold. The
soldiers' provisions in the after-hold and camp equipage floating about in one
mass. He then commenced to throw overboard all their stores and cargo to lighten
the ship, in which work sailors, soldiers, and every person that could stand
lent their aid. The ship's pumps were stopped by the floating rubbish. At half
past four A.M. made signals of distress. At half past six A.M. spoke gun-boat
Bienville and told them we were leaking, and wanted them to stand by us in case
we went down. At half past eleven A.M. made fast to her by a hawser, and lowered
a boat with boat's crew, three disabled men and one lady, and got them on board
all safe. The boat then got stove alongside the Bienville. She then sent us
another boat, on board of which some of our crew went, including the Chief
Engineer, Sabin —the first man on board to desert his post, which example was
followed by many of the crew. Then the Bienville's boat also got stove, after
landing them on board. She then parted the hawser, and came alongside of us with
a plunge. On account of the heavy sea she could not stay there, when some twenty
men jumped on board. Both the ships were slightly damaged by coming together.
About half past three P.M. she came alongside again, and struck and took off
four men, one of them being the carpenter. She then lowered another boat with a
crew, and came alongside, and made three trips, carrying ten or twelve persons
each time from the Winfield Scott. The leak was then gaining on us—six feet of
water in the hold on account of the soldiers stopping bailing to get on board
the Bienville—it being previously reported to Captain Edie that the forward hold
was full of water. Then the First Assistant Engineer came on deck, and reported
water in the engine-room to such an amount that the fires would not burn half an
hour longer. The Captain, seeing that it was getting late, and finding that he
could not get all the soldiers off before night, then sent the purser, Mr.
Patterson, on board the Bienville to ask the Captain to come alongside again;
but after waiting some time for the Bienville to come alongside he made up his
mind to try and get into smooth water, which he was advised to do by all the
officers of the Fiftieth Pennsylvania Regiment, who were on board, they
promising him to keep the ship afloat by bailing for at least eight hours. He
then steamed away from the Bienville at about six miles an hour. About one
o'clock Sunday morning, 3d, got into smooth water; the wind lowered by daylight.
At eight A.M. all the water out of the ship, steam pumps at work. At eleven A.M.
made the land off Port Royal and cast anchor in the bay, all hands in good
With regard to the
MAP of the
coast of South Carolina, its author says :
The Map on
page 762 is made from
the charts of the United States Coast Survey and other good authorities, and
represents clearly the region of South Carolina which produces rice and
sea-island cotton, also the important position gained by the Federal Government.
It will be seen that Port Royal harbor is nearly midway between
Savannah, and that both the land and water communications between these two
cities are commanded by the force holding possession of the Broad River.
On this map the depth of water
less than three fathoms or 18 feet is tinted, and thereby the approaches of the
harbors can be distinctly understood. It will be seen that this tint forms a bar
to each harbor except that of Port Royal. The depth of water in feet is given in
figures on each bar. The circuit which our fleet made in their attack on Forts
Walker and Beauregard is also shown. After a reconnoissance made by a captain of
the engineer department, a site for a battery at Seabrook was fixed upon. Here
five heavy guns will command Skull Creek, which is the only passage of deep
water from Broad River to Savannah.
On good maps and charts Bay Point
is the name given to the southern point of Edisto Island. However, as in our
dispatches this name is often given to the south end of Philip's Island, the
position of Fort Beauregard, the name is here given on our map.
SUCCESS AND FAILURE.
I HAD come back, after an absence
of nearly twenty-five years, to linger for a brief time amidst the old places
made sacred to memory by childhood and youth. How familiar, and yet how changed
in its familiarity was every thing!—every thing but the living who remained; and
they were few, for death had been there as every where. I asked for this one and
that one, as the thought of boyish friends came trooping back upon me, and the
answer, "Dead," came so frequently that I felt as if a pestilence must have been
"What of Payson ?" said I.
"Oh, he's all right," was the
cheerful answer of the old friend with whom I was conversing. " How all right ?"
My friend pointed to an elegant
house standing in the midst of ornamental grounds that were adorned with
fountains and statuary.
" He lives there," said he.
I remembered him as a young man
of small means, but industrious and saving. We had been tolerably intimate, and
I had liked him for his amiability, intelligence, and cheerful temper.
"Then he has become a rich man?"
" Yes, he is our wealthiest
townsman; one of the most successful men in this region of country." "Did he
build that house?"
"Yes, and its style shows how
well his taste is
cultivated. We feel naturally
proud of Mr. Payson."
"Then he is liberal as a citizen,
using his wealth in enterprises that look to the common good?" "Oh, as to that,"
was replied, "he is like other men."
" How like other men ?"
"'Thinks more of himself than he
does of other people."
" And what of Melleville?" I
There was a change in my
companion's countenance and manner that did not foreshadow a good report. He
shook his head as he replied :
"Poor Melleville stands about
where you left him; never has succeeded well in any thing." " I am grieved to
hear you say that. Of all my young friends I valued him most."
"It is too true; and I am sorry
for it. That is his house." And he pointed to a plain white cottage, standing
not far from the splendid residence of Mr. Payson, which made it look poor and
almost mean in contrast.
" Strange diversity of fortune !"
I said, speaking partly to myself. "Taking the two men as I now recall them,
Melleville most deserved success."
"He was an excellent young man,"
was replied to this ; " but lacked force of character, I suppose, or some other
element of success. What, I don't really know, for I have not been very intimate
with him for some years. He is peculiar in some things, and don't have a great
many warm friends." "Not so many as Mr. Payson, I presume."
" Oh no ! Of course not."
I was surprised at this
intelligence. Of the two men, I carried in my mind by far the pleasantest
recollections of Melleville, and was prepared to hear of his success in life
beyond that of almost every other one I had left in my native place.
" What of Henry Melleville ?" I
asked of another.
"Oh, he's a stick in the mud,"
was answered coarsely, and with an indifferent toss of the head.
" I am sorry that my old friend
Henry Melleville has made out so poorly," said I, speaking of him in a third
direction. "What is the cause of it ?"
"The causes of success or failure
in life are deeply hidden," was the answer I received. " Some men profess to be
gifted with a clear sight in these matters ; but I own to being in the dark.
There isn't an honester or more industrious man in the world than Melleville,
and yet he don't get along. Five or six years ago he seemed to be doing very
well, better than usual, when his shop burned down, and he lost not only
valuable tools, but a considerable amount of stock, finished and unfinished."
" Had he no insurance ?"
"Yes, but it was only partial;
just enough to get him going again. Ten years ago he had a mill, and was doing,
he told me, very well, when a spring freshet carried away the dam and
water-wheel. He had only rented the mill, and as the owner was in pecuniary
difficulty, and involved at the same time in a lawsuit about this very property,
no repairs were attempted, and he was forced to abandon a business that looked
very promising. And so it has been with him all along. There ever comes some
pull back just as he gets fairly on the road to success."
"How does he bear his
misfortunes?" I inquired. "I never heard him complain."
"It has been different with Mr.
"O dear, yes ; his whole life has
been marked with successes. Whatever he touches turns to gold."
The testimony in regard to the
two men agreed in the general. One had succeeded in life, the other had not. I
felt interest enough in both of them to get a nearer point of view, and so, in
virtue of old acquaintanceship, called to see them. My first visit was to Mr.
Payson. Was it because, like the rest of the world, I was more strongly
attracted by the successful man ? Have it so, if you will : human nature is
"Will you send up your name?"
said the servant, who showed me into a rather stylishly-furnished office, where
it was plain, from the display of books and papers, that Mr. Payson met his
visitors who came on business.
I gave my name, and then waited
for nearly five minutes before the gentleman appeared. I saw, the instant my
eyes rested on his face, that he was in some unpleasant doubt as to the purpose
of my visit.
"Mr. Payson," said I, warmly, as
I arose and extended my hand.
He pronounced my name, but in a
tone guiltless of pleasure or cordiality. The earnest pressure of my hand
received no appreciative return. His fingers lay in mine like the senseless
fingers of a sleeper. I was chilled by his manner, and felt like retiring
without another word. But having approached him, I was not willing to recede
without reading him with some care.
"It is twenty-five years since we
met," said I, after resuming the seat from which I had arisen. "Time works great
changes in all of us."
"So long as that," he responded,
"Yes, it is twenty-five years
since I went from the home-nest out into the world, an ardent, hopeful young
"And how has the world used you
?" He did not look at me in direct aspect, but with a slightly angular range of
vision, as if there here a selfish suspicion in his mind touching the object of
"I have no complaint to make
against the world," said I.
"You are a rara axis, then," he
replied, with the ghost of a smile ; "the first man I have met in a decade who
didn't rail at the world for treating him badly."
"Has it treated you badly?" I
could not help smiling back into his face as I asked this question.
"Yes; or at least, the people in
it. The world is well enough, I suppose; but the people! Oh dear! Every other
man you meet has some design on you."
"Your experience has been more
unfavorable than mine," said I.
"Then you are fortunate-that is
all I have to say."
I had been reading the face of
this friend of my younger days attentively from the moment he came in. He looked
older by forty years, instead of by twenty-five. But time had not improved his
face, as it does some faces. Every feature remained; I would have known him
among a thousand; but every feature was changed in its stronger or feebler
development. All that expressed kindness, humanity, and good-will had nearly
died out; while hard selfishness looked at you from every lineament.
"You have been fortunate," I
remarked, " as to this world's goods. Your garner is filled with the land's
The reference did not seem wholly
agreeable. "When I went from this neighborhood you were a poor young man. I
return, and find that you have heaped up wealth in rich abundance. Only the few
are successful in your degree."
"Money isn't happiness," he
replied, his hard, heavy forehead contracting.
"No ; but it may be made the
minister of happiness," I said, in return.
"Yes, I know. That's the common
talk of the day." He answered in a kind of a growl. " I find it the minister of
"You surprise me. Rich men are
not wont to speak after this fashion."
"'Then they don't speak from
their hearts, as I do."
"You have health and a beautiful
home. These are elements of happiness."
He shut his lips tightly and
shook his head.
"I have no sound health. Don't
know what it is to have a pleasant bodily sensation. And as for the beautiful
home to which you refer—" He checked himself, and became silent, while a painful
expression settled in his face.
" You have children ?"
He lifted his eyes to mine with a
questioning look, as if he thought me probing him.
"Yes," He simply answered.
"Pretty well grown by this time?"
"Some of them." He paused, and
then added, "And quite past me. Children, Sir !" His manner grew suddenly
excited. But he checked himself, with a slight air of confusion; then went on.
"Children, Sir!" Stopped once more, as if in shame.
"Happy is the man that hath his
quiver full of them," said I, cheerfully.
Payson merely shrugged his
shoulders, and looked stolid and unhappy. I referred, in order to change the
subject, to a topic of public interest. But his answers showed that he had no
intelligent appreciation of a matter in which every man of thought felt a common
interest. When I left him, after half an hour's interview, it was with the
impression that, outside of money, he was the most unsuccessful man it had been
my fortune to meet in this world. In nothing besides money-getting had he
succeeded. When I last saw him he was a cheerful, bright, hopeful, good-tempered
young man. Now he was morose, gloomy, and dull of intellect, except in a single
direction—a great money fungus, without any of the elements of a noble and true
Upon inquiry I learned that,
while his children were young, he was so absorbed in his fields and in his
merchandise that he had no time or inclination to cultivate their morals or to
win their love. In matters of no real moment as to the welfare of these children
he would interfere with his wife's management of them in an arbitrary and
tyrannical way; thus closing their minds against him, and destroying his
influence over them for good. Badly managed, repressed unwisely in some
directions and unwisely indulged in others, they were growing up selfish,
ill-tempered, proud, and exacting; cursing with discord his home instead of
blessing it with love. And he, as far as I could learn, giving way to a morose
temper, made their lives as uncomfortable as they made his. It was mutual
antagonism, and under circumstances that precluded a separation. And here was my
successful man !
"My dear old friend !" exclaimed
Henry Melleville, grasping my hand as he opened the door of his modest little
home, and stood looking me in the face, his own fine countenance all aglow with
pleasure. "This is a surprise ! Come in ! Come in !" And he drew me along the
passage into a small parlor, the meagre furniture of which told the story of his
"When did you arrive ? Where did
you come from ? Why, it's over—let me see—over twenty years since you were here,
or at least since I have seen you here."
"Over twenty-five," said I.
"So long! Is it possible? Well,
how are you, and where are you ? Tell me all about yourself." All about myself!
And the interest was sincere and cordial. "I must hear about you first," I
answered, smiling back into his smiling face. " How is it with you ?"
"Oh, as well as I deserve, and
something better," he replied, cheerfully. No shadows came over his face.
"You have not succeeded in
getting rich, I see."
"Not rich in this world's goods;
but true success in life is not always to be measured by gold. We start, in
early manhood, with happiness as the end in view, and in most cases wealth is
considered the chief means of securing that end. I own to having fallen into the
error myself. But my successes have not been in that direction. Riches would
have done me more harm than good, and so in mercy they have not been given. I
struggled hard for them ; I called them for a time the greatest good, or the
chief means toward attaining the