Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Affairs at Fortress Monroe --- Artillery Practice

FORTRESS MONORE, March 29. – On Friday evening the rebels threw a ball from one of the rifled guns at Sewall’s Point, which came within about 300 yards of the shipping in the upper roadsteads.

The Lincoln gun has been mounted, and this morning was tested in order to test the range.  Only ten shots were fired.  The second shot was a splendid ricochet.  The immense ball, weighing 437 pounds, after making three plunges and renewed flights, finally sunk away off near  Sewall’s Point.  If the Merrimac can stand ten of these Lincoln pills, as they are called here, she is proof against all appliances of modern gunnery.

There were some signs of activity towards Norfolk this a. m.  A steam tug came down to Sewall’s Point, and the smoke from a large vessel could be seen off, above Craney Island apparently.  A gunboat also came down the James River, within about three miles of Newport News, after reconnoitering, returned up the river.

The present high wind and low water, however, forbid all expectation of the approach of the Merrimac until the storm is over.

– Published in The Burlington Weekly Hawk-Eye, Burlington, Iowa, Saturday, April 5, 1862, p. 4

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