his operations to view the fight. Our all was at stake. America had never before had an opportunity since she became a nation, of meeting squadron to squadron.
No sooner had the first gun been fired from the Detroit, than they opened a tremendous fire from their whole line, of round, grape, and canister shot. The Scorpion, Tigress and Aerial, having long guns, re- turned their fire with considerable effect. Our vessel (the Lawrence) carried 20 guns -- ten on each side -- eighteen thirty-two pound carron- ades, and two long nines. My comrades fell on all sides of me. -- One man who stood next to me, was most shockingly wounded - having both of his legs shot of.., and a number of the spikes from the bulwark drove into his body. He was carried below, and survived until he heard victory pro- claimed -- he then exclaimed, "I die in peace," and immediately expired.
The whole of the enemy's line kept up an incessant fire, and our impatience became almost insupportable, but our ever watchful Commodore knew what was best to be done, and ordered the long gun to be manned, and fired; it was done in an instant, and the shot reached the enemy. -- .7ie kept up a fire with it for a few minutes, when an order from our commander put every man in motion -- "Stand by" -- a second intervened -- "Fire." I do not think there was more than a second's variation in the whole broad side -- every gun seemed to speak at once.
I shall not attempt to give a perfect detail of every trivial transaction that took place after we began to fire; that would be super- erogation. I paid particular attention to the gun which I had charge of, and loaded and fired as fast as possible, and at one time in a great hurry, shoved in a crowbar, and I found after the action was over that it did its duty on board the Detroit, by cutting away three shrouds of her main rigging.
At last my gun got so warm that it jumped entirely out of its carr- iage, which rendered it useless. Five of my men out of eight were either killed or wounded. I went to the next gun and found there but one man left, but by the assistance of my three she was soon made to play again. I could now hear an occasional gun fired from our vessel. I looked up to see if our flag was still flying, and with pleasure beheld, partly ob- scured by smoke, the star spangled banner yet waving, and heard Perry exclaim, "Man the boat."
I looked along the deck, and such a sight at any other time would have made me shudder, but now in the height of action, I only thought to say to myself, "poor souls!" The deck was in a shocking predicament. Death had been very busy. It was one continued gore of blood and carnage - the dead and dying were strewed in every direction over it -- for it was impossible to take the wounded below as fast as they fell.
There were four embarked in the small boat with Perry, and six remained on board the Lawrence. These ten were all that remained unhurt out of upwards of one hundred. There was one brave fellow by the name of
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