Thu Jul 06 1865|
CMDR Thomas T Craven, USS Niagra, writes SECNAV from Fluhsing Roads, "On our passage over to this port on the 21st ultimo, the ship then being under the charge of a Holland pilot, at about 2:45 a. m. Acting Volunteer Lieutenant Eben Hoyt reported to me that the ship had touched bottom. I immediately gave the order to stop the engines, and so soon as I could reach the deck, finding that we had rapidly increased the depth of water from 5 to 15 fathoms, I brought the ship to anchor. At about 6 a. m., in reply to my enquiries, I was informed by some French fishermen who were passing us that the West Hinder light-boat bore about northeast, 6 miles distant, so it thus appears we had passed over the northern point of a shoal called the Bergues, on which is marked 3 fathoms. Most fortunately, the sea was unusually smooth, and the tide being about half flood, giving at least 4 fathoms to float in, the graze, as reported to me, must have been very slight, and could have done no injury to the ship.
At 9a.m. the weather, which had been since midnight thick and hazy, cleared up, and discovering the light-boat in the direction indicated by the fishermen, we resumed our course for Flushing. On weighing anchor, how ever, discovered that the stock was gone.
On our arrival here Rear-Admiral A. A. de Fries, the commandant of the station, very promptly and kindly offered to supply us with a new one, and on the 5th instant a new anchor stock, weighing over 1,600 pounds, was received on board free of charge.
I yesterday called upon the admiral to thank him for this act of civility, but when I applied to him for the bill of cost he positively refused to listen to me, saying that neither he nor his Government would ever consent to be paid for an act such as all friendly nations would be glad to have it in their power to render to one another. Of course I could do nothing less than renew the expression of my thanks, and [say] that I should immediately bring these facts to your notice.
I now most respectfully suggest that some official notice on the part of our Government should be taken in this matter, and that not only the admiral, who has ever been prompt and earnest in his tender of services to our ships, but the Government, which has never joined in league with others to deny us the rights of hospitality, should receive some acknowledgment for their friendly courtesy toward us." SECNAV endorses it "Letter to Secretary of State, enclosing copy and suggesting tender
of thanks for the courtesy rendered."
SECNAV writes RADM Henry K Thatcher, West Gulf Squadron, "The Department has noticed that the several communications to the President from rebel officers, forwarded by you, bear an official signature, and it informs you that this is unnecessary, if not inappropriate.
In speaking of them in official dispatches you will avoid giving them any title derived from their position in the rebel service."
SECNAV writes RADM Samuel P Lee, Mississippi Squadron, "Your No. 291, dated the 27th ultimo, has been received. Five vessels only for the Mississippi Squadron are to be allowed, and this number is to include those at the Mound City station. But such others as are required to move stores, etc., will be retained until that duty is completed. The Department intends to break up the Mississippi Squadron.
The Bureaus of Construction and Equipment and Recruiting have given attention to other matters mentioned in your dispatch."