Bird, who was mortally wounded, but refused to leave the deck as long as he could be of the least service.
On board the Niagara, to which vessel Perry went in the height of the battle, and through an incessant fire from the enemy, there was at this time but one killed and three wounded. Perry made the signal to close with the enemy -- we made sail for that purpose, and were soon in close contact with the British, and the action was renewed with great vigor. The only words I recollect of hearing Perry say were - "Take good aim boys, dont waste your shot."
The smoke was so dense that it was impossible to see the enemy -- but we were so close to them, that by firing on a level we could not miss - their vessel being so much higher out of water than ours. The Lawrence struck her colors for a little time, and then hoisted them again.
I stooped down to get a shot, and accidentally put my hand on a small brass swivel, (it was nine inches long and would carry about a two pound ball) it struck me in an instant that it would be an handsome pre- sent for "John Bull" -- so I rammed it into my gun and let it go - it was found after the action on board the Detroit.
(This circumstance gave rise to the following anecdote between Admiral Barclay and Commodore Perry: "My fleet" said Barclay, "is yours -- I am forced to surrender, but it is no disgrace to me -- I have not dishonored my flag -- I am overpowered -- but you have not acted up to the laws of nations - there was a crowbar and a small brass swivel fired from your vessel on board of mine. Your men did not fight like men, but like tigers." "What can you expect," said Perry, "from a nation young in military tactics, -- my men are all raw Yankees, and fire very carelessly they do not care who they hit.")
The action raged with great fury on both sides for some time, when Perry, finding that our ammunition began to grow short, resolved to make one finishing blow. He ran down with the intention of boarding, but the Queen Charlotte had run afoul of the Detroit, which rendered her useless, as she could not fire at us without killing their own men -- while our shot took effect in both of them. Our flag was once shot away, which pro- duced three cheers from the enemy - but they were sadly mistaken - it was soon hoisted again. In short, after a bloody and well contested con- flict of three hours and forty eight minutes, the undaunted Union of Great Britain came down.
(During the action a shot struck a man in the head, who was stand- ing close by me; his brains flew so think in my face, that I was for some time blinded, and for a few moments was at a loss to ascertain whether it was him or me that was killed. -- We had pease boiling for dinner -- our place for cooking was on deck, and during the action a shot had penetrated the boiler, and the peas were rolling all over the deck, - we had several pigs loose on deck, and I actually saw one of them eating peas that had both his hind legs shot off -- and a little dog belonging to one of the
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