Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 12.djvu/51

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Capture of the Confederate Steamer Florida. 41

two-thirds of those captured to the WacJmsctt. He then paroled the officers, and put the men in double irons. As there were so few men compared to the Wachusett's crew, and those divided between the two ships, I tried to get Captain Collins to allow the irons to be taken off of all, or a part of them, during; the day, but he refused to do so. Beyond keeping the men in double irons for nearly two months, there were but two cases of severity towards them that were reported to me. Henry Norman (cox.j was ironed to a stanchion with his hands behind him for having the key of a pair of the Florida's irons in his pocket. He, as well as all the other men on the Wachusett, was ironed with the irons belonging to her (the WachuseW). John Brogan (fireman) was kept in the sweat-box. Dr. Emory reported to me that he was sick and could not stand such treatment. I asked Captain Col- lins to tell me why he was so treated. His reply was that Brogan was seen talking, and that when his master-at-arms came up he stopped. He also said that Brogan had, the day the Florida was captured cursed one of his engineers, who tried to get him to show him some- thing about our engines. He said, though, that he had ordered his release two days before, and thought he had been taken out. This was about three weeks after our capture. Brogan informed me after- wards that he had been confined there for several days, and eighteen nights. A few days before going mto St. Thomas, I went to Captain Collins and told him that on a previous occasion he had informed me that he was going to put our men ashore at Pernambuco, and that as we would be in port a few days, I would like to know if he still in- tended to put them ashore, at the same time telling him that I thought the Florida would be given up by his Government, and that I thought any honorable man would try to return the ship and crew as nearly in the condition in which he found her as he could. His reply was, "I have not thought of it — I have not thought of it to-day." After further convensation I left him, believing that he would not try to break up the crew. But before leaving St. Thomas our men were in- formed that all of them who wished to go ashore could do so, and that Master George D. Bryan and one other officer would meet them to look out for them. They asked what was to become of their money, which had been taken from them, and were told that Mr. Bryan would take it ashore for them. A number of them thought this was a trick to get rid of them, and would not go, but eighteen were foolish enough to believe it, and had their irons taken oft" on the berth-deck, and were put in a boat from the bow port, and allowed to go ashore. The first Mr. Bryan heard of his part of the affair was