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Sinking Of The Virginius

Sinking Of The Virginius image
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Lieut. David C. Woodrow, wbo was is i coruinand of the Yirgiuius at the tiine of her sinking, says in hia official report that wheu üe took command on tho 17th at Dry Tortugas the vessel liad water in uil her coiapartmeut3. Stores were received 011 board and a woiking party froni the Oásipee eoaled the Bhip all night. Next uiorning they stoppod coaling and put all hands ut work pnmping and bailing, the water having gained two l'eet during the rught. At 8 A. M. the water was up to tUe grate bars in both üre rooms. The forward coiupartments had a depth ot two teut six inches of water. At 4 p. M. the water was so inuch reduced that tires were started in the boilers. Gapt. Wuitiug expreased himseli satistied ihat the Yirgimus was iu a fit coudition to start Nortu, and about two o'cloek she went to sea in tow of the Ossipee. As long as the sea was suiooth everything progressed íavorably, but a storm arising, the vesael leaked so badly that we had to plug up the timber holds in the forward balithuada to keep the fire rooms clear. üu tho 22d wo threw ovorboard all heavy weights in the hold and shifted the ooal to lighten her forward. On the atternoon of the '2',id there was from eight to ten feet of water in the forward compartmunts. Tho uien were wom out. The buuks were drenehed and there was no place to sleep. Under theae ciroumstanoes VVoodruw advised the coinm ander of the üssipee not to go further uorth, but to take the Virginius into Charleston, where there was a dook. On the 24th the boilers were ia such a wretehed Cündition thatit wasimpossiblo to carry more thaii five ponnds of steam. At five A. 11. on the 2üth tho wator gained so fast as to put out the tires, and Wood ruw signaled the Ossipee to take the crow oif the Virginius immediately. At this time the forwaid compartment was full of water up to within a toot and a half of the spar deck, five fect of water in the hold, water over the grate bars in the firp rooms, and after compartment dry. The sen was very rough and it was blowing a gale. When the boat from the Ossipee eame under the Virgmius' bow the landmeii wure put in tirst. It took five trips to take all the officers and men off the sinkmg vussul. At 4:17 P. M. the Virginius suuH bow first in eight fathoms of water. 'Ihe cross-trees are above the water. For tour days the men in the fire room worked in water up to their knees, and at the time thty left the ship were uearly exhausted.


Old News
Michigan Argus