Fort Fisher

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

Monday, March 27, 2017

The Proper Care of Gunboats and Building New Ones-- Part 2

March 26, 1862:  Union commanders in the west and elsewhere recognized how much the margin of Union superiority and the power to thrust deep into the Confederacy depended upon the gunboats, and care was exercised not to lose the effectiveness of this mobile force.

Meanwhile, greatly concerned about the threats of Confederate naval ironclads, Secretary of War Stanton wired the President of the Board of Trade at Pittsburgh:  "This Department desires the immediate aid all of all of your association in the following particulars:  1st.  That you will appoint three of its active members most familiar with the steamboat and engine building who would act in concert with this Department and under its direction, and from patriotic motives devote some time and attention for thirty days in purchasing and preparing such means of defense on the Western waters against ironclad boats as the engineers of this Department may devise....

"My object is to bring the energetic, patriotic spirit and enlightened, practical judgement of your city to aid the Government in a matter of great moment, where hours must count and dollars not be squandered."

--Old B-Runner

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