to steam and back, and at about 7 o'clock she moved from her position and passed slowly ahead. At this time about 200 troops had been and were in the process of being transferred to the Mount Vernon. The Mount Vernon got under weigh and ran along with the vessel for a mile or more, when she passed ahead to lead the way the vessel for a mile or more, when she passed ahead to lead the way to an anchorage. The Mississippi cans anchor to allow her boats to come up the coldiers and then weighed and followed the Mount Vernon. It had been known that she leaked batty, and it was found that the water filled the lower hold and fore hold, and that it was fast coming in.
Details of soldiers were set to work bailing, and such pumps as could be worked were set going, with no apparent effect upon the leak. It was supposed that she had forced a hole in herself upon the anchor. All that could work were incessantly occupied with the leak. At about 10 o'clock anchored in Cape Fear River, below Fort Caswell; passed the night, which was clear and beautiful, in quiet.
In the morning of March 1 a survey was held upon the vessel, at the order of General Butler, by colonel Dow, H. L. Sturgis, acting master of the Mount Vernon, who had been left on board of the Mississippi by Commander Glisson, and Captain Conant, of the Thirty-first Regiment. They reported in favor of proceeding under convoy to Port Royal. A quilted sail was placed under her bow; all hand arranged for bailing and pumping, and the captain of the Mount Vernon having agreed to accompany and having kindly detailed acting Master Sturgis to proceed with us to Ship Island, the vessel-the chain having been bough aft and the gun amidships-at about 6 o'clock set out for Port royal. She was very much down by the head and the leak remained as before, the water-tight compartments preventing the water from coming aft the forecastle. The night was pleasant, the sea smooth, with no wind, and the vessel ran at about 8 1/2 knots an hour.
March 2, at 8 o'clock a. m., the vessel was off Charleston, S. C., with the Mount Vernon about 2 miles astern; weather delightful. Three blockading vessels just out; one ran down to the Mount Vernon; vessel kept steadily forward, and at about 5 o'clock arrived in harbor at Port Royal and anchored; leak as before. Sent ashore for leave to land troops that evening, but could not get it until morning.
Sent to Flag-Officer Boggs, of the Varuna, for assistance ad survey. He, with Captains Boutelle and Renshaw, came immediately on board; promised all assistance in their power; lay at anchor all night.
March 3, proceeded according to orders to Skull Creek, Seabrook's Landing, about 7 miles up the river. In the forenoon landed the troops, and under charge of Captain Boutelle, of the Bibb, commenced searching for and endeavoring to stop the leak. A sail was bent over the bow, and all the pumps on board with several obtained from the land were set to work. This was continued from day to day without effect until on Friday, the 7th of March, a mattress cushion having been substituted from the sail, at evening the leak was got under.
On Saturday the 8th, just as the stoppage of the hole was supposed to have been effected, it burst out afresh.
Sunday, the 9th, renewed attempts were made with success, and the hoe was stopped; a cushion of tarred oakum was wound around the hole; several sheets of tarred canvas laid on, then a thick sheet of rubber; a sheet of boiler iron was laid over this and screwed down with a jackscrew, and several barrels of heated rosin poured in, covering in to the depth of 8 inches. This caused the leak to nearly stop, and was pronounced sufficient for safety by nautical men of large experience.