Who was Turner anyway?

Who was Turner anyway?

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A Turner Bugler, 2004

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Operations off Charleston.


January and February 1864

From The Missouri Democrat, Monday, February 15, 1864.

Operations off Charleston.

BOSTON, Feb. 12. – The correspondent of the Boston Herald, writing from the fleet off Charleston, describes the destruction of the blockade runner as follows:

Off Charleston, very early this morning, some daring Englishman made a bold attempt, just before daybreak, and during a fog, to run the blockade. He succeeded in getting in as far as the mouth of the harbor, where he was run ashore by trying to avoid the shells from our batteries, which were flying in every direction. The fog soon cleared up, and there was the blockade runner, hard and fast on the beach. She was a splendid looking side-wheel steamer, with two smokestacks and rakish masts. Forts Wagner and Gregg, aided by two monitors, at once commenced to shell her, and by noon she was a complete wreck. A 200 pounder Parrott, from Fort Wagner, nearly cut her in two. Besides this shelling of the steamer, the city of Charleston, James Island, and Forts Johnson and Moultrie, received terrible cannonading.

The same correspondent, under date of February 3d, says the rebels have tried several times lately to reinforce the almost worn out garrison in the ruins of Fort Sumter, but have failed. It cannot be done by daylight, as our guns have full range of the harbor all around, and at night our calcium lights are kept lighted, and bear not only on Sumter, but upon all the harbor and the city, so that it is impossible for a boat or steamer to go near the ruins. In addition to this, the small remnant of a garrison in the ruins are treated every ten or fifteen minutes to have a Parrott shell from sunset till daylight. Most of the men in Sumter are negro slaves, and we know that some twenty or thirty of them are killed daily.

The night before last, it being somewhat hazy one of the rebel rams, in company with a torpedo boat, a cigar-shaped infernal machine, proceeded down the creek in the rear of Sullivan’s island, for the purpose of going out to make an attempt to destroy the gunboats Housatonic and Niponic, which were on guard duty that night in the channel, near Beach Inlet. When the ram and infernal machine had got ready to make a dash out of the inlet, it was found that the machine was in a sinking condition. She was then turned back into the inlet, with eight of her crew. This mishap put an end of the attempt to destroy our vessels. This is the third infernal machine the rebels have lost.

A few days ago a squad of ten Rebel soldiers, including a sergeant, escaped to our lines. They say that starvation stares them in the face at Charleston, that all civil laws are at an end in the place, and that military rules have full power, that they are becoming desperate, and that every means in their power will be resorted to force the blockade. They must have assistance or starve. They report that the city is badly damaged from Gillmore’s constant bombardment, which is still going on. It is calculated that at least a shell is sent into the city about every ten minutes.