The capture of the blockade runners in the previous post underscored Dahlgren's letter to Porter: "You see by the date [Feb. 18th] that the Navy's occupation has given the pride of rebeldom to the Union flag, and thus the rebellion is shut out from the ocean and foreign sympathy." This was a bit of bragging as Porter had not yet taken Wilmington which was generally regarded as the closing of the Confederacy.
To secretary Welles, Dahlgren added: "To me the fall of Charleston seems scarcely less important than that of Richmond. It is the last seaport by which it can be made sure that a bale of cotton can go abroad. Hence the rebel loan and credit are at an end."
Learning of the fall of Charleston a wee later in Nassau, Lt. Wilkinson, CSN, the daring Confederate sea captain, agreed: "This sad intelligence put an end to all our hopes...."
At last the city that had symbolized the South's spirit was in Northern hands.