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the said vessel in Messrs. Laird and Co.'s yard at Birkenhead, and remained by her until Saturday last.
6. The said vessel is a screw steamer of about 1,100 tons burthen, as far as I can judge, and is built and fitted up as a fighting ship in all respects. She has a magazine, and shot and canister racks on deck, and is pierced for guns, the sockets for the bolts for which are laid down. The said vessel has a large quantity of stores and provisions on board, and she is now lying at the Victoria Wharf, in the Great Float at Birkenhead, where she has taken in about 300 tons of coal.
7. There are now about thirty hands on board her, who have been engaged to go out in her. Most of them are men who have previously served on board fighting ships, and one of them is a man who served on board the Confederate steamer “Hunter.” It is well known by the hands on board that the vessel is going out as a privateer for the Confederate Government, to act against the United States, under a commission from Mr. Jefferson Davis. Three of the crew on board are, I believe, engineers, and there are also some firemen on board .: 8. Captain Butcher and another gentleman have been on board the ship almost every day. It is reported on board the ship that Captain Butcher is to be the sailing-master, and that the other gentleman, whose name I believe is Bullock, is to be the fighting captain.
9. To the best of my information and belief, the above-mentioned vessel, which I have heard is to be called the “s Florida,” is being equipped and fitted out in order that she may be employed in the service of the Confederate Government in America, to cruize and commit hostilities against the Government and people of the United States of America.
(Signed) WILLIAM PASSMORE. Sworn before me, at the Custom-house, Liverpool, this 21st day of July, 1862.
(Signed) J. Price EDWARDS, Collector.
Mr. Adams to Earl Russell.-(Received July 26.)
Legation of the United States, London, July 24, 1862. IN order that I may complete the evidence in the case of the vessel now fitting out at Liverpool, I have the honour to submit to your Lordship’s consideration the copies of two more depositions taken respecting that subject.
In the view which I have taken of this extraordinary proceeding as a violation of the Enlistment Act, I am happy to find myself sustained by the opinion of an eminent lawyer of Great Britain, a copy of which I do myself the honour likewise to transmit.
Renewing, &c. (Signed) CHARLES FRANCIS ADAMS.
Inclosure 1 in No. 6.
Depositions: I, EDWARD ROBERTS, of No. 6, Vere-street, Foxteth Park, in the county of Lancaster, ship-carpenter, make oath and say as follows :
1. I am a ship.carpenter, and have been at sea for about four years in that capacity.
2. About the beginning of June last I had been out of employ for about two months, and hearing that there was a vessel in Messrs. Laird and Co.'s yard fitting out to run the blockade, I applied to Mr. Barnett, shipping-master, to get me shipped on board the said vessel.
3. On Thursday, the 19th day of June last, I went to the said Mr. Barnett's office, No. 11, Hanover-street, Liverpool, in the county of Lancaster, and was engaged for the said vessel as carpenter's mate. By the direction of the said Mr. Barnett I met Captain Butcher the same day on the George's landing-stage, and followed him to Messrs. Laird and Co.'s ship-building yard, and on board a vessel lying there. The said Captain Butcher spoke to the boatswain about me, and I received my orders from the said boatswain. At dinner-time the same day, as I left the yard, the gateman asked me if I was “going to work on that gun-boat ;' to which I replied, “ Yes."
4. The said vessel is now lying in the Birkenhead float, and is known by the name guns, I think four on a side, and a swivel gun. The said vessel is fitted with, shot and canister-racks, and has a magazine. There are about fifty men, all told, now on board the said vessel. It is generally understood on board of the said vessel that she is going to Nassau for the Southern Government.
5. I know Captain Bullock by sight, and have seen him on board of the said vessel five or six times; I have seen him go round the said vessel with Captain Butcher. I understood, both at Messrs. Laird and Co,'s yard and also on board the said vessel, that the said Captain Bullock was the owner of the said vessel.
6. I have been working on board the said vessel from the 19th day of June last up to the present time, with wages at the rate of 61. per month, payable weekly. I have signed no articles or agreement. The talk on board is that an agreement will be signed before sailing. .
(Signed) EDWARD ROBERTS. Sworn at Liverpool, in the county of Lancaster, this 22nd day of July, 1862.
Before me, (Signed) Wm. Brown, Justice of the Peace for Lancashire and Liverpool.
I, ROBERT JOHN TAYLOR, of Mobile, but at present remaining temporarily at Liverpool, mariner, make oath and say as follows:
1. I am a native of London, and 41 years of age. From fourteen years upwards I have followed the sea. During the last fifteen years I have been living in the Confederate States of America, principally at Savannah and Mobile, and since the Secession movement I have been engaged in running the blockade. I have run the blockade six times, and been captured once.
2. The vessels in which I have been engaged in running the blockade have sailed from Mobile, and have gone to Havana and New Orleans. I am well acquainted with the whole of the coast of the Confederate States, as I have been principally engaged since 1847 in trading to and from the Gulf ports.
3. I came to England after my release from Fort Warren on the 29th of May last. I came here with the intention of going to the Southern States, as I could not get there from Boston.
4. Mr. Rickarby, of Liverpool, a brother of the owner, at Mobile, of the vessel in which I was captured when attempting to run the blockade, gave me instructions to go to Captain Butcher at. Laird's yard, Birkenhead. I had previously called on Mr. Rickarby, and told him that I wanted to go South, as the Northerners had robbed me of my clothes when I was captured, and I wanted to have satisfaction.
5. I first saw Captain Butcher at one of Mr. Laird's offices last Thursday fortnight (namely, the 3rd of July last). I told him that I had been sent by Mr. Rickarby, and asked him if he were the Captain of the vessel which was lying in the dock. I told him that I was one of the men that had been captured in one of Mr. Rickarby's vessels, and that I wanted to get South in order to have letaliation of the Northerners for robbing me of my clothes. He said that if I went with him in his vessel I should very shortly have that opportunity.
6. Captain Butcher asked me at the interview if I was well acquainted with the Gulf ports, and I told him I was. I asked him what port he was going to, and he replied that he could not tell me then, but that there would be an agreement made before we left for sea. I inquired as to the rate of wages, and I was to get 41. 10s. per month, payable weekly.
7. I then inquired if I might consider myself engaged, and he replied, Yes, and that I might go on board the next day, which I accordingly did; and I have been working on board up to last Saturday night.
8. I was at the siege of Acre in 1840, in Her Majesty's frigate “Pique,” Captain Edward Boxer, and served on board for nine months. Captain Butcher's ship is pierced for eight broadside guns and four swivels or long-toms. Her magazine is complete, and she is fitted up in all respects as a man-of-war, without her ammunition. She is now chock-full of coals, and has, in addition to those in the hold, some thirty tons on deck.
9. One day, whilst engaged in heaving up some of the machinery, we were singing a song, as seamen generally do, when the boatswain told us to stop that, as the ship was not a merchant-ship, but a man-of-war.
(Signed) ROBERT JOHN TAYLOR. Sworn at Liverpool, in the county of Lancaster, this 22nd day of July, 1862.
Case submitted to Mr. Collier, Q.C.
YOU will receive herewith copies of the following affidavits in reference to a gunboat known as “ No. 290,” which was built by Messrs. Laird and Co. at Birkenhead, as it is believed for the Confederate States of America, and which is now lying ready for sea in all respects in the Birkenhead docks :-No. 1. Affirmation of T. H. Dudley ; No. 2. Affidavit of J. de Costa ; No. 3. Affidavit of Mr. Maguire; No. 4. Affidavit of H. Wilding and M. Maguire ; No.5. Affidavit of A. S. Clare ; No. 6. Affidavit of William Passmore; No. 7. Affidavit of Edward Roberts; No. 8. Affidavit of Robert John Taylor. An application has been made on the Affidavits Nos. I to 6 inclusive, to the Collector of Customs at Liverpool, to detain the vessel under the provisions of the Act 59 Geo. III, cap. 69; but, under the advice of the Solicitors to the Customs, the Board have declined to sanction the detention of the vessel.
You are requested to advise the Consul for the United States at Liverpool whether the affidavits now submitted to you disclose facts which would justify the Collector of Customs in detaining the vessel under the Act in question. July 23, 1862.
Opinion. I have perused the above affidavits, and I am of opinion that the Collector of Customs would be justified in detaining the vessel. Indeed, I should think it his duty to detain her; and that if, after the application which has been made to bim, supported by the evidence which has been laid before me, he allows the vessel to leave Liverpool, he will incur a heavy responsibility, a responsibility of which the Board of Customs, under whose directions he appears to be acting, must take their share.
It appears difficult to make out a stronger case of infringement of the Foreign Enlistment Act, which, if not enforced on this occasion, is little better than a dead letter.
It well deserves consideration whether, if the vessel be allowed to escape, the Federal Government would not have serious grounds of remonstrance. Temple, July 23, 1862.
(Signed) R. P. COLLIER.
Earl Russell to Mr. Adams.
Foreign Office, July 28, 1862. I HAVE the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letters of the 22nd and 24th instant, relative to the vessel alleged to be fitting out at Liverpool for the service of the so-styled Confederate States; and I am to state to you, in reply, that these papers have been referred to the Law Officers of the Crown.
I am, &c. (Signed) RUSSELL.
Mr. Adams to Earl Russell.-(Received September 5.)
Legation of the United States, London, September 4, 1862. I HAVE the honour to transmit the copy of a letter received from the Conşul of the United States at Liverpool, together with a deposition in addition to the others already submitted with my notes of the 22nd and 24th of July, going to show the further prosecution of the illegal and hostile measures against the United States in connection with the outfit of the gun-boat “No. 290” from the port of Liverpool. It now appears that supplies are in process of transmission from here to a vessel fitted out from England, and now sailing on the high seas, with the piratical intent to burn and destroy the property of the people of a country with which Her Majesty is in alliance and friendship. I pray your Lordship's pardon if I call your attention to the fact that I have not yet received any reply in writing to the several notes and representations I have had the honour to submit to Her Majesty's Government touching this flagrant case.
Renewing, &c. (Signed) CHARLES FRANCIS ADAMS.
Inclosure 1 in No. 8.
Mr. Dudley to Mr. Adams.
United States' Consulate, Liverpool, September 3, 1862. I HAVE just obtained the affidavit of the boatswain's mate who shipped in and went out on the “ No. 290,” now called the “Alabama.” I inclose it to you, with bill for his services, signed by Captain Butcher. He returned on the “ Bahama.” He states that the “ Alabama” is to cruize on the line of packets from Liverpool to New York; that Semmes told them so. This may have been said for the purpose of misleading us. The barque that took out the guns and coal is to carry out another cargo of coal to her; is to take it on either at Cardiff or Troon, near Greenock, in Scotland : the barque to meet the “ Alabama” near the same island where the armament was put on board, or at least in that neighbourhood. There will be no difficulty to get other testimony, if it is required.
I am, &c. (Signed) THOS. H. DUDLEY.
P.S.-There were two American vessels in sight when they parted with the “Alabama,” which Captain Semmes said he would take. They no doubt were taken and destroved, the firstfruits from this vessel.
T. H. D.
Inclosure 2 in No. 8.
HENRY REDDEN says :-I reside in 16, Hook Street, Vauxhall Road, and am a seaman.
In April last I shipped as boatswain's mate of a vessel lying in Laird's Dock at Birkenhead, known as “290,” and worked on board until she sailed.
We sailed from Liverpool about 28th July ; Captain Butcher was master ; Mr. Law, a Southerner, was mate; Mr. Lawrence Young was purser. A Captain Bullock went out with us, but left with the pilot at Giant's Cove, near Londonderry. There were five ladies and a number of gentlemen went with us as far as the Bell Buoy. We went first to Malfre Bay, inear Point Lynas, when we anchored and remained about thirty hours. The “Hercules” tug brought down about forty men to us there ; nothing else was then taken on board. Her crew then numbered ninety men, of whom thirty-six were sailors. She had no guns on board then, nor powder, nor ammunition. We left Malfre Bay on the Thursday night at 12 o'clock, and steered for the North Channel. We discharged Captain Bullock and the pilot on Saturday afternoon. We first steered down the South Channel as far as Bardsea, when we 'bout ship and steered north. From Derry we cruized about until we arrived at Angra eleven days after leaving Holyhead. About four days after we arrived an English barque, ---, Captain Quinn, arrived from London with six guns, two of them 98-pounders (one rified and the other smooth-bore) pivot guns, and four 38-pounder breech guns, smooth-bore broadside guns, 200 or 300 barrels of powder, several cases of shot, a quantity of slops, 200 tons of coal. She came alongside and made fast. We were anchored in Angra Bay about a mile and a half or two miles from shore. After being there about a week, and while we were taking the guns and ammunition on board, the authorities ordered us away. We went outside and returned at night. The barque was kept lashed alongside and we took the remainder of the guns, &c., on board as we could. While we were discharging the barque the steamer “ Bahama," Captain Tessier, arrived from Liverpool, Captain Bullock, Captain Semmes, and forty-men came in her. She also brought two 38-pounder guns, smooth-bore, and two safes full of money in gold. She had a safe on board before, taken on board at Birkenhead. The “Bahama” was flying the British flag. The “ Bahama” towed the barque to another place in the island and we followed. The next morning we were ordered away from there, and went out to sea until night, when we returned to Angra Bay. The “ Bahama," after towing the barque away the evening of her arrival, came back to the “ Alabama,” or “ 290," in Angra Bay, made fast alongside of her, and discharged the guns on board of her and the money.
The men struck for wages, and would not then go on board. There were four engineers, a boatswain, and captain's clerk named Smith, also came in the “ Bahama," and they were taken on board the same evening. All three vessels continued to Ay the British flag the whole time. The guns were mounted as soon as they were taken on board. They were busy at work getting them and the “Alabama," or 6 290," ready for fighting while the “Bahama” and the barque were alongside. On the Sunday afternoon following (last Sunday week) Captain Semmes called all hands aft, and the Confederate flag was hoisted, the band playing “ Dixie's Land.” Captain Semmes addressed the men, and said he was deranged in his mind to see his country going to ruin, and had to steal out of Liverpool like a thief. That instead of them watching him he was now going after them. He wanted all of us to join him,—that he was going to sink, burn, and destroy all his enemy's property, and that any that went with him was entitled to two-twentieths prize money; it did not matter whether the prize was sunk or burned or sold, the prize money was to be paid.
That there were only four or five Northern ships that he was afraid of. He said he did not want any to go that was not willing to fight, and there was a steamer alongside to take them back if they were not willing.
The vessel was all this time steaming to sea, with the “Bahama” at a short distance. Forty-eight men, most of them firemen, refused to go, and an hour afterwards were put on board the “ Bahama.” I refused to go, and came back with the rest in the “ Bahama.” Captain Butcher, Captain Bullock, and all the English engineers came with us and landed here on Monday morning. When we left the “ Alabama" she was all ready for fighting, and steering to sea. I heard Captain -Semmes say he was going to cruize in the track of the ships going from New York to Liverpool, and Liverpool to New York. The “ Alabama” never steamed while I was in her more than eleven knots, and cannot make any more. We signed articles while in Malfre Bay for Nassau or an intermediate port. Captain Butcher got us to sign. The provisions were put on board at Laird's yard before sailing; they were for six months. When we left her she had about ninety men and eight guns mounted, three on each side and two pivots.
(Signed) HENRY REDDEN. Declared and subscribed at Liverpool aforesaid, the 3rd day of September, 1862.
to administer Oaths in Chancery.
Foreign Office, September 22, 1862. I HAVE the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 4th instant inclosing a copy of a letter from the United States' Consul at Liverpool, together with the deposition of Henry Redden respecting the supply of cannon and munitions of war to the gun-boat“No. 290.” You also call attention to the fact that you have not yet received any reply to the representations you have addressed to Her Majesty's Government upon the subject.
I had the honour in acknowledging the receipt of your letter of the 23rd of June to state to you that the matter had been referred to the proper Department of Her Majesty's