Fort Fisher

Fort Fisher
Fort Fisher, NE Bastion. Frank Vizetelly (National Geographic)

Saturday, December 26, 2015

December 27, 1865: Welles Greatly Dislikes Admiral Semmes-- Part 1

From the Civil War Naval Chronology.

Dec. 27, 1865:  Secretary Welles observed in his diary that his orders to arrest Raphael Semmes had been carried out and that the ex-Confederate raider captain was being brought to Washington to stand trial for breaking parole.

"He did not belong in the Rebel region, "wrote Welles, "and has not therefore the poor apology of those who shelter themselves under the action of their States; he was educated and supported by that government which he deserted in disregard of his obligations and his oath; he made it his business to rob and destroy ships and property of his unarmed countrymen engaged in peaceful commerce; when he finally fought and was conquered he practiced a fraud, and in violation of his surrender broke faith, and without ever being exchanged fought against the Union at Richmond."

Semmes definitely had something to worry about once in Washington as Welles definitely had it in for him.  At the end of the diary entry, Welles was referring to the battle between the USS Kearsarge and CSS Alabama which resulted in the latter's being sunk.  However, Semmes was not captured at the time and as such had not agreed to a parole.

--Old B-Runner

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