Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 19.djvu/88

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82 Southern Historical Society Papers.

flat deck of the ram enjoying the sea breeze, when a floating black object was observed bobbing up and down, and supposed at first that it was a sort of a devil-fish with its young, as we had killed one with its calf only a few weeks previously ; but the motion was too slow, evidently. A telescope soon revealed the fact that it was a torpedo drifting in with the flood-tide. Here was literally the " devil to pay !" We could not send a boat's crew after it to tow it out of the way. You could not touch it; you could not guide it. There was no means in our power to divert it from its course. Finally at the sug- gestion of Captain David Rainey, of the marines, he brought up his whole guard with loaded muskets, who at once commenced to shoot at the floating keg and sunk it, but not a moment too soon, for it only disappeared under the water about twenty feet from the ram.

As the sketch is confined exclusively to operations inside the shield of the ram Tennessee, I have not thought it germane to detail anything in relation to the other three gunboats of the Confederate fleet, which being wooden vessels, were sunk or captured early in the first action.

It may be interesting, which is omitted above, to state the cause of the wound received by Admiral Buchanan. It was by a fragment of iron, either a piece of solid shot, or part of the plating of the ram which fractured the large bone of the leg, comminuting it, and the splintered ends protruding through the muscles and the skin.

The admiral's aids were Lieutenants Carter and Forrest. They tenderly nursed him during the entire four months of his confinement in the hospital at Pensacola, accompanied him to Fort Warren, cared for him while there, and brought him back to Richmond after his ex- change. The former is now a prominent citizen of North Carolina ; the latter until ten years ago lived in Virginia, since which time I have lost sight of him.

[From the Winchester, Va., Times, January 14, 1891.]

History of the First Battle of Manassas and the Organi- zation of the Stonewall Brigade.



When in May, 1861, General Joseph E. Johnston arrived at Harper's Ferry to command the unformed, disorganized mass of men