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Battle of New Orleans
May 12, 1862 Richmond Daily Dispatch

The following is transcribed from the Richmond Daily Dispatch, dated May 12, 1862.


New Orleans.

The circumstances attending the capture of New Orleans by the enemy are worthy of prominent record. The authorities of the duty held out to the last in their stubborn and heroic refusal to lower the flag of their adoption and hoist in its stead the hated emblem of oppression; and when at last the Stars and Stripes floated over the public buildings, under the protection of the enemy's guns, the citizens could well congratulate a themselves upon the preservation of their dignity and honor — that though fallen, they were not disgraced.

We subjoin some further extracts from the correspondence between Commodore Farragut and Mayor Monroe:



U. S. Flag-Ship

Hartford, At anchor off the city of New Orleans, April 28, 1862.


To his Honor the Mayor and City Council of the city of New Orleans:

Your communication of the 28th inst. has been received, together with that of the City Council.

I deeply regret to see, both by their contents and the continued display of the flag of Louisiana on the Court-House, a determination on the part of the city authorities not to haul it down. Moreover, when my officers and men were sent on shore to communicate with the authorities, and to hoist the United States flag on the Custom-House with the strictest order not to use their arms unless assailed, they were insulted in the grossest manner, and the flag which had been hoisted by my orders on the Mint was pulled down and dragged through the streets.

All of which go to show that the fire of this first may be drawn upon the city at any moment, and in such an event the levee would in all probability be cut by the shells, and an account of distress ensue to the innocent population, which I have heretofore endeavored to assure you that I desired by all means to avoid.

The election is therefore with you. But it becomes my duty to notify you to remove the women and children from the city within 48 hours, if I have rightly understood your determination.


Very respectfully, your ob't serv't,

[Signed] D. G. Farragut,

Flag-Officer Western Gulf Blocking squadron.


The Mayor convened the City Council, and we learn that it was decided by them not to recede from their position, and the Louisiana flag still floats proudly to the breeze. Bravo! for New Orleans.

The following further correspondence between Mayor Monroe and Com. Farragut we had in the New Orleans Delta of Tuesday evening:


City Hall, April 28, 1862.

To Flag-Officer D. G. Farragut,


U. S. Flag-Ship


Your communication of this morning is the first intimation lever had that it was by your strict orders that the United States flag was attempted to be hoisted upon certain of our public edifices by officers sent or there to communicate with the authorities. The officers who approached me in your name disclosed no such orders and intimated no such design on your part, not would I have for a moment entertained the remotest suspicion that they could have been invested with power to enter such an errand while the negotiations for a surrender between you and the city authorities were pending. The interference of any force under your command, as long as those negotiations were not brought to a close, could not be viewed by us otherwise than as a flagrant violation of those courtesies, if not of the absolute rights, which prevail between belligerents under such circumstances. My views and sentiments with reference to such conduct remain unchanged. You now review the demands made in your former communication, and you insist on their being complied with unconditionally, under a threat of bombardment within forty-eight hours; and you notify me to remove the women and children from the city that they may be protected from your shells.


Sir, you can but know that there is no possible exit from this city for a population which still exceeds in number one hundred and forty thousand, and you must therefore be aware of the utter inanity of such a notification. Our women and children cannot escape from your shells, if it be your pleasure to murder them on a question of etiquette. But if they could, there are few among them who would consent to desert their families and their homes, and the graves of their relatives in so awful a moment. They would bravely stand the sight of your shells tearing up the graves of those who are so dear to them, and would deem that they died not ingloriously by the side of the tombs erected by their piety to the memory of departed relatives.

You are not satisfied with the peaceful possession of an undefended city, opposing no resistance to your guns, because of its bearing its hard fate with something of manliness and dignity, and you wish to humble and disgrace us by the performance of an act against which our nature rebels. This satisfaction you cannot expect to obtain at our hands.


We will stand your bombardment, unarmed and undefended as we are. The civilized world will consign to indelible infamy the heart that will conceive the dead and the hand that will dare to consummate it.



John T. Monroe,

Mayor of New Orleans.

U. S. Flag-Ship

Hartford, At anchor off the City of New Orleans, April 29, 1862.


To His Honor the Mayor of the City of New Orleans.



The Forts of St. Phillip and Jackson having surrendered, and all the military defences of the city being either captured or abandoned, you are required, as the sole representative of any supposed authority in the city, to haul down and suppress every ensign and symbol of government, whether State or Confederate, except that of the United States. I am now about to raise the flag of the United States upon the Custom-House, and you will see that it is respected with all the civil power of the city.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant.

D. G. Farragut, Flag-Officer

Western Gulf Blockading squadron.


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