Wednesday, April 18, 2012

April 18, 1862

Qr. Master Sergt. Howe:
Diary:
     April 18,1832. We came to anchor at the head of. South-West Pass, Mississippi River, where we remained until the navy captured Forts St. Philip and Jackson. We were crowded, had little to eat, dirty, lousy; our only excitement was watching the shells at night during the bombardment.

2d Lieut. Elliot:
Diary:
     April 18-Friday
     Weather very warm but pleasant
     All we find to do to take up our spare time is watch and hear the reports from our Guns up to the Forts. smoke can be seen very plainly and it shows us that Commander Farragut an Porter are by no means idle. we get no news from them yet and do not know what success they are meeting with but put all our trust in them. after we get the Fort, New Orleans is ours without a doubt.
     We are getting along slowly are now at the head of the passes and going slowly on.
     Matanzus and Gunboat Jackson have gone down after the Great Republic. she is so large she cannot get over the bar.
     Flashes seen to night very distinctly and the reports heard more distinct than at any time previous.
     We get up on top of the Wheelhouse and hear Dr. Cleavelands patriotic sermons and good prayers for our Country, our homes, Wives Mothers, Fathers, Brothers, Sisters, and at the same time hear our Guns boom away in the distance. the Flashes going though the Heavens like lighting. it forms a picture must be seen to be appreciated. and one that thrills threw a true Patriots bosom with feelings of admiration and love for both God and his country.

Corpl. B. B. Smith:
Diary:
     Friday 18
     A fine morn.  the ship going
     Slow under short sail.  about
     8 Oc. got sight of some of our
     Vessels ahead took a pilot from
     The colorado and proceeded
     Up through the mouth of the
     River.  now we are in the
     Father of rivers.  the water
     Looks muddy but tastes cool
     And good a large lot of
[Mem]
     Small islands, covered with
     Bushes & shrubbery and large
     Number of birds of all kinds
     It is pleasant to see land
     After on a sand bank so long
     The men all busy cleaning up
     Births.  this is a regular old
     Tub of a ship.  we have just
     Passed a small rice plantation
     With its cabins around it.
     We also passed a small village
     Called pilot town.  it looked
     Quite pleasant, with the
     Union Flag flying.  the
     Missisippi has passed up the
     River with Butler & Staff
     On board the ship is at anchor
     The wind is to light for her to
     Sail against the tide which
     Runs about 5 knots the hour.
     There is a report that they are
     Bombarding fort jackson.

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