Friday, July 17, 2009

Rebels In London.

The information here is bits and pieces taken from diplomatic letters and reports. This information is to help you in search to learn more of your ancestors life, and maybe lead you in a new direction of research you never thought of before.

Note. The information on this page comes from the records of the 41st. Congress called, Enforcement of Neutrality, Rebel operations from Canada Vol. II. No. 1395.

London, January 27, 1865.

The Virginia, is a sister ship to the City of Richmond, she is nearly new, over four hundred and fifty net, and said to be a remarkably fine vessel. She went, to Greenhithe this morning, she has nothing but coals in at present, and had not cleared for any ports, though her crew has signed articles for Bermuda, and there their arrangement ends. She will probably leave the river to-morrow, perhaps earlier.

London, January 27, 1865.

Privateersmen who left the Thames on the City of Richmond, went to Cherbourg, France, where they remained on board about one week. They are now on board a steamer at Omanville, waiting to be transferred to the corsair on which they are to serve.

The City of Richmond has left the port of Chierbourg, and, as is supposed, proceeded on her voyage to Bermuda, for which island she cleared from the port of London.

Two ships or steamers now in this port, of which are the Sea King, now the Shenandoah, the other the Virginia, a few days ago the Zealous.

Mr. Dadgeon, is the builder of the privateers Tallahassee and Chickamauga.

The ship No. 40 has Louisa Anna Fanny on her stern, without stops between the names.

London, February 9, 1865.

Just received information of the escape of the iron-clad steamer Olinde from Nantes, and the transfer of rebel seamen and armament from the steamer City of Richmond, sent from this port, at the island of Houat, on the French coast.

A iron-clad steamer, mounting three guns, with seventy-four men, had put into Corunna to repair damages. It was called the Stonewall. It turns out, that the steamer first called by a French name, l’Expeditif, which met this vessel to supply the men and armament, was in fact the British steamer City of Richmond, which is known to have left London about the 13th of January, with a number of men enlisted for the rebels.

The Stonewall turns out to be one of M. Arman’s vessels, built originally in France for the rebels; then negotiated for by the Danish government, and sent to Copenhagen for inspection, but rejected by it as not satisfactory; next examined and inspected by Mr. Barreda, the Peruvian minister here, and found un-seaworthy; and, lastly, slipped out of France by the original party that was responsible for it, and had failed to get rid of it. Under these circumstances it is no surprise that after a trial run in the bay of Biscay she should have put into Ferrol to repair damages. The impression is that, as usual, the rebels will meet with a disappointment greater than their success.

Liverpool, February 11, 1865.

The English steamer City of Richmond off the coast of France, and her armament, which was made here in England, transferred to her with supplies for a cruise, and an English crew. The information is that she is now called the Stonewall. Fearing that she might attempt to run into some of the northern seaport towns and lay them in ashes—possibly obtain entrance by practicing some deception, as flying the English flag, the same as has been frequently done by these piratical vessels.

The English steamer Laurel, the same that took out from here the armament and men for the pirate Sea King, returned to this port on Thursday last. She came in ballast from Nassau, in command of Captain Ramsey, an Englishman, the same man who took her out, and is consigned to Fraser, Trenholm & Co. They now call her the Confederate States, of Charleston, and pretend that she has been transferred to the so-called confederate government. She flies the confederate flag.

The schooner Catharine Anne cleared from here on the 9th instant for Nassau, in command of T. Evans. She is one hundred and sixty-three tons burden, and was cleared by I. Glynn & Sons. Her cargo consists of three hundred bags of saltpeter, some rifles, and army clothing and blankets intended for the rebels.

The English bark Walkington, of three hundred and fifty-six tons burden, commanded by R. Waugh, was entered to load for Nassau on the 31st of January, by Prichard & Co. She has taken in already three hundred and thirty-seven cases of long Enfield rifles, containing twenty in each ease, making six thousand seven Hundred and thirty, (the cases are marked C. H.—O. B.,) and eight hundred bags of saltpeter. She will also take in one hundred and thirty tons of lead and a quantity of machinery-, all intended for the confederates.

It is understood the English merchants here intend to keep up their communications with the South, and send them supplies by way of Matamoras, Galveston, and Florida, and that they are making extensive arrangements to carry it on by way of these places, especially by way of Matamoras.

Washington, March 13, 1865.

The pirate Stonewall, alias Olinde, alias Stoerkodder.

The before-named vessel is a steam ram. She is one of two ships of that class which were built by Arman, a shipwright at Bordeaux, and member of the Chamber of Deputies, at Paris, under a contract with and for the use of insurgents in the civil war now existing in the United States. She was for that reason denounced by us to the imperial government of France, when, upon full investigation, it was ordered that she should not leave France in the diameter or for the purposes for which she was built, and should leave that country only in the case of her being actually sold to a party which shall be neutral in regard to our civil war. The vessel was reported to the imperial government as having been sold to the government of Denmark, which their was and yet is a neutral power, and upon that report she was sent under a French flag, to be delivered at Copenhagen.

The vessel received a partial armament while at Copenhagen. After remaining there several months, she departed from that port, as is said, with a Danish crew, and under a Danish flag, and after some delay, in winch she made Swedish amid Dutch ports, she came up to the island of Houat, within the marine jurisdiction of France, where she received seamen, coals, and supplies front a steamer which had been sent out for that purpose from some British port, understood to be Liverpool and thus furnished she gave up the Danish flag and crew, and exhibited herself under an insurgent flag, as a rebel ship of war.

Washington, March 21, 1865.

Information is that the steamer City of Richmond had arrived at Nassau, from port of England, via Bermuda; It was understood a passenger from Bermuda, that a large amount of guns, ammunition, &c., had been transferred from that steamer to the iron-clad vessel Olinde, alias Stoerkodder, alias Stonewall; that it was said, also, that it was the intention of the captain of the Olinde to run in and destroy Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and other eastern seaports.

The steward of the City of Richmond stated to that the steamer City of Richmond transferred about seventy men and a quantity of powder and some tanks on board of the Olinde, off the coast of France; that these men came on board of the City of Richmond, in the Thames, after she left London; that several so-called confederate officers were on the ship, part of whom had charge of these men; that they put no guns on board; that she (the Olinde) had them already there; and that she was said to have come from France.

London, March 1, 1865.

Sixteen of the crew formerly belonging to the Florida, with many other seamen, are here, under the charge of the rebel agent. Either the Shenandoah, or a rebel iron-clad called the Stonewall, is hourly expected here. The steamer City of Richmond, under the British flag, arrived here a few days since; one of her seamen informs, they took from Cherbourg sixty men, which they put on board the Stonewall, near Belle Isle, France; they also transferred a large quantity of arms and ammunition to the Stonewall, then under command of a Captain Paige, formerly of the United States navy.

London, April 7, 1865.

It is impossible to be insensible to the injury that may yet be impending from the part which the British steamer City of Richmond has had, in being suffered to transport with impunity, from the port of London, men and supplies, to place them on board the French-built steam-ram Olinde, alias Stoerkodder, alias Stonewall, which has, through a continuously fraudulent process, succeeded in deluding several governments of Europe, and in escaping from this hemisphere on its errand of mischief.

Teneriffe, April 2, 1865.

The confederate ram Stonewall, Commander Page, arrived at this port on the 31st of March, at 6 p. in., in three days from Lisbon. She was allowed to remain here only twenty-four hours, during which time she took in one hundred and thirty tons of coal, and sailed again on the 1st, at 6 p. m. Where she has gone it is impossible to say; but the general opinion, gathered from her officers, is that Bermuda will be her next port, whence she intends a sudden descent somewhere on our coast.

New York, March 18, 1865.

Ernest W. Pratt and Robert Green, passengers on the Corsica, from Nassau, who arrived last evening at 11 o’clock, and were arrested by officer James S. Chalker, of the revenue service, not having the necessary passports, and were brought to these headquarters this morning for examination.

Pratt was secreted in the captain’s room and Green in the pursers room during the time all the other passengers were being examined by the officer. Pratt was the mate and Green was the steward of the steamer City of Richmond. This steamer, of four hundred and fifty-five tons, was owned by Cranshaw, the rebel agent in London; was fitted out there, loaded with coals and provisions at that port, and cleared, with W. Scott as master, about the 3d .January last, for Bermuda or any of the West India Islands, with the understanding on the part of Pratt and Green that she was to run the blockade. After leaving London she dropped down the Thames River about eighty miles to a place called Greenhithe, and there took on board some boxes of small-arms, between sixty and seventy officers and men, and about three hundred barrels of gunpowder. The regular crew of the City of Richmond was composed of about forty-five officers and men, taken on at London. After shipping the ammunition and men she steamed for the coast of France, and in about seven days arrived off Belle Isle, when she met the rebel ram Olinde, and at a distance of about four miles from shore. She transferred to this ram all the officers and men taken on at Greernihithe, a large quantity of provisions, and about one hundred and fifty barrels of gunpowder, and all the small-arms.

She then steamed for Bermuda, anchored in the harbor of St. George, where she landed some of her provisions and balance of gunpowder, took in coal, made some repairs, and remained in port about a week. She then went to Nassau, New Providence, where she arrived about the 4th or 5th March instant. After remaining on board in this port about four days, all the officers and men were ordered on shore by Captain Scott, and some functionary was sent from the town to enforce the order. There had been difficulty between the officers and crew and Captain Scott, growing out of the manner in which Captain Scott had discharged the former from the ship. After they had left the ship Captain Scott gave her into the hands of one Captain Davidson, not a British subject, who had come out in her from London, and was the agent of the owner, Cranshaw. The City of Richmond was at Nassau when the Corsica left.
Mr. Green, made his statements very unwillingly, and only in reply to pressing and searching questions. he knows much more than he admits, and refused to answer many question that was put to him. There is no doubt whatever that he was fully aware of the whole objects of the fitting out the cargo, the passengers, and the destination of the City of Richmond. In close herewith the certificate of discharge of Pratt and Green.

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