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An incident of the sail to S.C.

Herbert E. Valentine Civil War Diary


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Valentine, Herbert E.
P.41, P.42
When we sailed from Beaufort Harbor N.C. for South Carolina, I was on the Str. "United States," which was Genl. C. A. Heckman�۪s flagship. It was very rough as we went over the bar. A small boat was towed behind us in which sat a darkie at the rudder steering, and trying to keep it right side up. The staff and regimental officers on the "United States" were disposed to make fun of the poor darkie, and tried to get his attention by calling to him and inviting him to come on board. But he knew better than not to attend to his work, and without a smile paid strict attention to business. As we went through the white water a sort of anxious expression passed over his face, but he was there to do but one thing, and that he did faithfully. A little heavier sea than common, finally unshipped his rudder, but without an attempt to save it, he cast loose the tiller ropes, and grapsing an oar, thrust it out behind and still kept his little boat in trim. The officers subsided as they found they could make no impression upon him. The Str. "Expounder" sailing near us also towed a small boat which was capsized, and the darkie who was steering it, went up the rope to the steamer deck in a very sprightly matter.
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African Americans
Beaufort Harbor (N.C.)
Heckman, Charles Adam, 1822-1896
An incident of the sail to S.C.

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