Thursday, September 1, 2011

Confederates Take Control of Ship Island, Mississippi-- Part 2

Continuing from the August 26th entry.

On July 6, 1861, Captain Edward Higgins took command of the CSS Oregon and CSS Swain and left New Orleans looking for the USS Massachusetts. They didn't find the federal ship, but placed guns and men on Ship island including 55 CS Marines and 30 members of the 4th Louisiana.

On July 9th, the USS Massachusetts confirmed Confederate occupation of the island, counting four gin emplacements and 39 tents.

The ship, under command of Cmdr. Melancton Smith, then moved toward the island with intention of battle but found their gins were out of range but Confederate shells could hit the ship.

Shots were exchanged and the Massachusetts withdrew to Chandeleur Island.

On July 13th, the Smith returned and exchanged shots with the CSS Oregon and Arrow. The Confederate ships tried to lure the Union ship to get close to Ship Island, but he didn't take the bait.

A Little-Known Part of the War. --Old B-Runner

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