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 Posted: Sat Aug 8th, 2009 12:58 am
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Henry
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The following order from Federal Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles underlines the importance given to the XIII inch bore Seacoast Mortar. Both the Philadelphia and New York Navy Yards were active in the transformation of twenty two merchant schooners into men-of-war, each to carry one Mortar. Several of the vessels had additional ordnance.

Navy Department, January 21, 1862

Sir: The Department desires to call your particular attention to the great importance of getting the bomb fleet to sea at the earliest possible moment. Let the work on them take precedence of all other. Next in importance are the steamers. If you fall short in men, draft them from the Sabine, which vessel can wait for the steamers, as was telegraphed on Tuesday last.
I am, respectfully, your obedient servant, Gideon Welles

Commodore H. Paulding
Commandant, Navy Yard, New York

(Extract from ORN, Series I, Volume 18, Page 8)

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