Monday, December 12, 2011

Naval Happenings 150 Years Ago: "More Effectively Closed Than a Bottle with Wire Over the Cork"

From the Civil War Naval Chronology.

DECEMBER 2, 1861-- Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles' first annual report to Lincoln reports that 153 vessels captured, mostly running the blockade. With vessels now building and purchased, the Navy will have 264 ships, 2,557 guns and 218,016 tons. Seamen in service now not less than 22,000.

"The amount appropriated at the last regular session of Congress for the naval service for the current year was $13,168,675.86. To this was added at the special session in July last $30,446,875.91...The sum will not be sufficient...."

(So Welles reported big growth to the US Navy as well as success in the blockade, but even with more money, more was needed.)

DECEMBER 5, 1861-- Flag Officer DuPont reports a successful expedition to Wassaw Sound, Ga..

The "Stone Fleet" is off Savannah, but he regards "that city is more effectively closed than a bottle with a wire over the cork...." He was going to see if the fleet could be used at Charleston.

(The Stone Fleet were old whaling ships loaded with stones supposed to be sunk off a Confederate port to close it.)

DECEMBER 15, 1861-- USS Jamestown captured Confederate sloop Havelock near Cape Fear, NC.

There were more things happening, but these would be ones of interest to me.

(There were more captures, but I am just reporting on the ones by Wilmington, NC.)

A Sesquicentennial Thing. --Old B-Runner

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