Read CHAPTER IX - BY WIRE of The Boys of 98, free online book, by James Otis, on ReadCentral.com.

May 30. The auxiliary cruisers Leyden and Uncas made an attack on one of the outlying blockhouses at Cardenas, plying their 3-pounders until the Spaniards deserted their batteries.

June 1. The government of Paraguay represented to the American consul at Asuncion that the Spanish torpedo-boat Temerario was disabled, and had been granted permission to remain at that port until the war between the United States and Spain had come to an end.

In Spain there are many differences of opinion regarding the conduct of the war, as evinced by a newspaper article to which was signed the name of Emilio Castelar, the distinguished republican statesman.

Senor Castelar attacked the queen regent, reproaching her with being a foreigner and unpopular, and with interfering unjustifiably in political affairs.  He compared her position with that of Queen Marie Antoinette on the eve of the French revolution.

The matter came before the Senate; Duke de Roca demanded the prosecution of Castelar, and other Senators expressed in violent terms their indignation at Senor Castelar’s conduct.

June 2. The British steamer Restormel, captured by the auxiliary cruiser St. Paul off Santiago de Cuba, was released by the government.  It was shown that the Restormel sailed previous to the declaration of war, there being no evidence that the steamer’s owners were wilfully and knowingly guilty of aiding the enemy’s fleet, and she was ordered released.  The cargo was condemned.

The names of the captains and commanders of the ships in Admiral Dewey’s squadron were sent to the Senate, by the President, for advancement because of their conspicuous conduct.

The House of Representatives passed an urgency appropriation of nearly eighteen million dollars for war purposes.

From Captain Clark’s report, the Navy Department made public the following extract relative to the extraordinary voyage of the Oregon

“It is gratifying to call the department’s attention to the spirit aboard this ship in both officers and men.  This best can be described by referring to instances such as that of the engineer officers in voluntarily doubling their watches when high speed was to be made, to the attempt of men to return to the fire-room after being carried out of it insensible, and to the fact that most of the whole crew, who were working by watches by day and night at Sandy Point, preferred to leave their hammocks in the nettings until they could get the ship coaled and ready to sail from Sandy Point.”

June 3. The collier Merrimac was sunk in the channel of Santiago Harbour, as has already been told.

June 4. Captain Charles Vernon Gridley, commander of the cruiser Olympia, and commanding her during the battle of Manila Bay, died at Kobe, Japan.

June 5. An account of personal heroism which should be set down in every history, that future generations may know of what metal the boys of ’98 were made, was telegraphed from Tampa, Florida.

Lieutenant Parker, who was in charge of the old clubhouse on Lafayette Street, near the brigade headquarters, and which was being used by the government as a storehouse, and Thomas McGee, a veteran of the civil war, prevented what might have been a calamity.

While a force of soldiers was engaged in carrying boxes of ammunition from the warehouse and loading them to waiting army wagons, smoke was seen issuing from a box of ammunition.  In an instant the cry of fire went up, and soldiers and negro roustabouts piled over each other in their scramble for safety.  McGee, however, rushed toward the box, picked it up, and was staggering in the direction of the river, some distance away, when Lieutenant Parker, who had heard the warning cry, came to his assistance.  Together they carried the smoking box until it was possible to throw it into the water.

How the fire originated is a mystery.  In the storehouse were piled hundreds of boxes of ammunition, each containing one thousand cartridges.  Had the cartridges in the burning box exploded, a great loss of life might have resulted, as there were at least a score of soldiers working in and around the building.

At Madrid the Spanish Minister of Marine issued orders that every one connected with the admiralty must abstain from giving information of any kind regarding naval affairs.

General Blanco in Havana published an order prohibiting foreign newspaper correspondents from remaining in Cuba, under the penalty of being treated as spies.

June 6. As is told in that chapter relating to Santiago de Cuba, American troops were landed a few miles east of the city, at a place known as Aguadores; the forts at the entrance of Santiago Harbour were bombarded.

The Navy Department made public a cablegram from Admiral Dewey: 

“The insurgents are acting energetically in the province of Cavite.  During the past week they have won several victories, and have taken prisoners about eighteen hundred men and fifty officers of the Spanish troops, not natives.  The arsenal of Cavite is being prepared for occupation by United States troops on the arrival of the transports.”

Cablegrams from Hongkong announced that the insurgents had cut the railway lines and were closing in on Manila.  Frequent actions between Aguinaldo’s forces and the Spaniards had taken place, and the foreign residents were making all haste to leave the city.  A proclamation issued by the insurgent chief points to a desire to set up a native administration in the Philippines under an American protectorate.  Aguinaldo, with an advisory council, would hold the dictatorship until the conquest of the islands, and would then establish a republican assembly.

June 7. The monitor Monterey and the collier Brutus sailed from San Francisco for Manila.  The double-turreted monitor Monadnock has been ordered to set out for the same port within ten days.

June 9. The Spanish bark Maria Dolores, laden with coal and patent fuel, was captured by the cruiser Minneapolis twelve miles off San Juan de Porto Rico.

June 10. A battalion of marines was landed in the harbour of Guantanamo, forty miles east of Santiago.(3)

A blockhouse at Daiquiri shelled by the transport steamer Panther.(4)

June 11-12. Attack upon American marines in Guantanamo Bay by Spanish regulars and guérillas.(5)

June 11. The British steamer Twickenham, laden with coal for Admiral Cervera’s fleet, was captured off San Juan de Porto Rico by the U. S. S. St. Louis.

June 12. Major-General Merritt issued orders to the officers assigned to the second Philippine expedition, to the effect that they must be ready to embark their troops not later than the fifteenth instant.

The following cablegram was made public by the Navy Department: 

“Cavite, June 12. - The insurgents continue hostilities, and have practically surrounded Manila.  They have taken twenty-five hundred Spanish prisoners, whom they treat most humanely.  They do not intend to attack the city at the present time.

“Twelve merchant vessels are anchored in the bay, with refugees on board, under guard of neutral men-of-war; this with my permission.  Health of the squadron continues excellent.  German commander-in-chief arrived to-day.  Three Germans, two British, one French, one Japanese man-of-war in port.  Another German man-of-war expected.

“The following is a corrected list of vessels captured or destroyed:  Two protected cruisers, five unprotected cruisers, one transport, one surveying vessel, both armed.  The following are captured:  Transport Manila, gunboat Callao.

“DEWEY.”

Advices from Honolulu report that on June 1st H. Renjes, vice-consul for Spain, at Honolulu, sent the following letter to H. E. Cooper, Hawaiian Minister of Foreign Affairs, relative to the entertainment of the American troops at Honolulu: 

Sir: - In my capacity as vice-consul for Spain, I have the honour to-day to enter formal protest with the Hawaiian government against the constant violation of neutrality in this harbour, while actual war exists between Spain and the United States of America.”

June 6. On June 6th Minister Cooper replied as follows: 

Sir: - In reply to your note of the first instant, I have the honour to say that, owing to the intimate relations now existing between this country and the United States, this government has not proclaimed a proclamation of neutrality having reference to the present conflict between the United States and Spain, but, on the contrary, has tendered to the United States privileges and assistance, for which reason your protest can receive no further consideration than to acknowledge its receipt.”

June 13. American troops sailed from Tampa and Key West for Santiago.

The Spaniards again attacked the American marines at Guantanamo Bay, and were repulsed after seven hours’ hard fighting.(6)

President McKinley signed the war revenue bill.

Secretary Gage issued a circular inviting subscriptions to the popular loan.

The dynamite cruiser Vesuvius joined Admiral Sampson’s fleet.(7)

While the U. S. S. Yankee was off Cienfuegos on this day, a Spanish gunboat steamed out of the harbour, evidently mistaking the character of the newcomer; but on learning that the Yankee was ready for business, put back in hot haste.  Both vessels opened fire, and after the gunboat had gained the security of the harbour the Yankee engaged the eastern and western batteries.  During the brief action a shell burst over the American ship, its fragments wounding one man.

June 14. The American marines at Guantanamo Bay again attacked by the Spaniards.(8)

The heroes of Santiago Bay, who sank the Merrimac, rewarded by the Navy Department.(9)

First trial of the dynamite cruiser Vesuvius.(10)

The war tax on beer, ale, tobacco, cigars, and cigarettes went into effect on this date.

June 14. From Manila on June 14th much of interest was received.  A severe engagement occurred, when one thousand insurgents attacked twice that number of Spaniards, inflicting heavy losses.  The insurgents had drawn their lines closely around the landward side of the city, and Captain-General Augusti published a decree ordering all the male population under arms.  Mr. E. W. Harden, correspondent of the New York World, thus summed up the situation: 

“Terrific fighting has been going on for six days between the Philippine insurgents and the Spaniards.  The rebels, under Aguinaldo, more than held their ground, while the Spaniards lost heavily.  The insurgents now hold three thousand prisoners, mostly Spanish soldiers.

“I have been in the field with the rebels, and I was present at the taking of the garrisoned church at Old Cavite, June 7th, where three hundred insurgents captured a superior force of Spaniards after an eight days’ bombardment.  The rebels are competent, courageous fighters.  They have captured the entire provinces of Cavite and Bataan, and parts of the provinces of Pampagna, Bulucan, and Manila.

“Aguinaldo’s troops, in three divisions, have now surrounded Manila.  They have the Spaniards hemmed in, and could capture the city if they wanted to, but will await the arrival of the American troops before doing so.

“The rebels have captured Gov.  Leopoldo Garcia Penas, of Cavite province, and Gov.  Antonio Cardola, of Bataan province.  Cardola tried to commit suicide before surrendering.  He shot himself three times in the head, but will recover.  The insurgents behaved gallantly in the fight for the possession of the stone convent in Old Cavite, June 1st.  General Augusti sent two thousand Spanish regulars of the Manila force to attack Aguinaldo’s forces at Cavite.  The fight lasted all day.  The Spaniards were repulsed, and the officers led in retreat.  They took refuge in the old convent, a substantial building, with walls five feet thick, built for all time.

“Aguinaldo surrounded the convent, and his first plan was to starve out the beleaguered ones, but he found, June 6th, that provisions were being smuggled in to them, and so he attacked the building, beginning by opening fire with his mountain guns.  Meantime, General Augusti, hearing of his soldiers’ plight, sent four thousand regulars to relieve them.

“Aguinaldo led the attack on these four thousand.  But after the first brush he adopted another method.  He sent detachments of three hundred or four hundred men, armed with machetes, on the flanks of the Spaniards, who constantly harassed them.  In the first attack of these detachments one hundred and fifty Spanish soldiers and a lieutenant-colonel were killed.  In the second onslaught four officers and sixty men were killed.

“Again and again these attacks were repeated until nine hundred Spaniards had been killed, the insurgents report.  The convent, too, became untenable.  The Spaniards retreated along the road to Manila, but made a stand at Bacoor.

“Aguinaldo and his men fought them fiercely there, and the Spanish fled again.  The rebels pursued the enemy to within sight of Manila.  Returning, Aguinaldo stormed the old convent, and of the Spaniards who remained there he killed ninety and captured 250.”

June 15. The second fleet of transports, comprised of the steamers China, Colon, Senator, and Zealandia, carrying 3,465 men, left San Francisco for Manila.

The war loan of two hundred million dollars subscribed for twice over.

Bombardment of the fortifications in Guantanamo Bay.(11)

The House of Representatives passed the Hawaiian annexation resolution.

June 16. Third bombardment of the batteries near Santiago.(12)

The Spanish forces in and near Cardenas had repaired the damages inflicted by the American vessels when they bombarded the works, and on June 16th another lesson was given those who killed Ensign Bagley and his brave comrades.  Five blockhouses were completely demolished, the enemy beating a hasty retreat without having fired a shot.

June 17. Fortifications in Guantanamo Bay shelled by American naval force.(13)

Capture of the Spanish sloop Chato in Guantanamo Bay.(14)

June 18. Bombardment of blockhouse in Guantanamo Bay.(15)

Battery at Cabanas shelled by the U. S. S. Texas.(16)

June 19. First American troops landed on Cuban soil.(17)

June 20. General Shafter and Admiral Sampson visit General Garcia in his camp.(18)

June 21. Landing of General Shafter’s army begun.(19)

Bombardment of all the fortifications near about Santiago.(20)

Captain-General Augusti cabled the Madrid government that he, having been forced to take refuge in the walled city,(21) would be unable to continue communication.

June 22. By a decision of the Attorney-General, the United States government will surrender to the ambassadors of France and Germany, as the diplomatic representatives of Spain, the non-combatants and crews of the prize merchant vessels captured by ships of the American navy since the declaration of war.

Boats’ crews from the U. S. S. Marblehead and Dolphin remove the mines from Guantanamo Bay.(22)

Bombardment of the Socapa battery near Santiago.(23)

Spaniards set fire to the town of Aguadores.(24)

The U. S. S. Texas engages the west battery of Cabanas.(25)

Captain Sigsbee of the U. S. S. St. Paul, in reporting his cruise of twenty-three days, gave the following account of a meeting with the enemy off San Juan de Porto Rico on the 22d of June: 

June 22. “We came off the port on the twenty-second.  The weather was fair, the trade wind blowing fresh from the eastward and raising somewhat of a sea.  At about 12.40 the third-class cruiser Isabel III. came out, and, steaming under the Morro until she was abreast of the batteries, commenced edging out toward us, firing at such a long range that her shots were ineffective.

“As her purpose evidently was to put us within fire of the batteries, we took but little notice of her, lying still and occasionally sending in our largest shell at her to try the range.

“Soon afterward she dropped to the westward, and the torpedo-boat destroyer Terror, or it may have been her sister ship, the Furor, was sighted steaming along shore under the batteries.

“We watched her for awhile, and worked along with her, in order to separate her from the cruiser and keep her in trough if she came for us.  She then circled to get up speed, and headed for us, firing straight as far as direction went, but her shots fell short.

“When within range of our guns, the signal ‘commence firing’ was made, and for several minutes we let fly our starboard battery at her at from fifty-five hundred to six thousand yards, the shells striking all around her.

“This stopped her.  She turned her broadside to us and her fire soon ceased.  She then headed inshore, to the southward and westward, going slow, and it was evident to all on board that she was crippled.  Off the Morro she flashed some signals to the shore, and afterward a tug came out and towed her into the harbour.

“All this time the cruiser was firing at us, and some of her shots and those of the Terror fell pretty close.  The cruiser followed the Terror back toward the port and soon afterward was joined by a gunboat, and the two steamed under the batteries to the eastward; but when the St. Paul, making an inshore turn, seemed to be going for them, they returned to the harbour, and we saw no more of them.”

June 23. The U. S. monitor Monadnock left San Francisco for Manila.

The U. S. dynamite cruiser Vesuvius again shells the Santiago fortifications.(26)

June 24. The Spanish Cortes suspended by royal decree.  The Chamber of Deputies adjourned without the customary cheers for the throne.

Major-General Lawton advancing on Santiago.(27)

Action near Juragua.(28)

June 25. Skirmish near Sevilla.

The American government protested a draft drawn by its consul at St. Thomas, D. W. I., under circumstances calculated to make an extremely dangerous precedent.  The draft was made by Consul Van Horne for the purchase of twenty-seven hundred tons of coal, which arrived in St. Thomas in the Ardenrose about the twenty-eighth of May.  The consul bought it for ten dollars a ton when the Spanish consul had offered twenty dollars a ton for it.  Van Horne apparently did the proper thing and did not exceed instructions.

June 26. General Garcia with three thousand Cuban insurgents landed at Juragua by American transports.(29)

The troops comprising the third expedition to Manila embarked at San Francisco.

The sloop Isabel arrived at Key West flying the Cuban flag.  On her were Capt.  Rafael Mora, Lieut.  Felix de los Rios and four others of the Cuban army, carrying sealed dispatches from the Cuban government to Senor T. Estrada Palma, of the New York junta.

The U. S. dynamite cruiser Vesuvius shelled the fortifications at the entrance to Santiago harbour.(30)

The water-supply of Santiago cut off by the American forces.(31)

A Spanish fleet entered the harbour of Port Said, Egypt, at the head of the Suez Canal, on the twenty-sixth.  It was composed of: 

Battle-ship Pelayo, Admiral Camara’s flag-ship.

Armoured cruiser Emperador Carlos V.

Auxiliary cruiser Patriota, equipped with twelve guns, and carrying troops and marines.

Auxiliary cruiser Buenos Ayres, equipped with ten guns, and carrying stores and a few troops.

Torpedo destroyer Audaz.

Armed merchantman Isla de Pany, equipped with two guns, and carrying stores and a few troops.

Auxiliary cruiser Rapido, equipped with twelve guns.

Steamship Colon, unarmed and with no troops.

Torpedo destroyer Proserpina.

Torpedo-boat destroyer Osada.

Transport Covadonga, carrying no guns.

Collier San Francisco.

June 27. The United States government, determined to delay, if possible, the progress of the fleet toward the Philippines, instructed its consul to protest to the English government against the coaling of the fleet at Port Said.  In response to such protest the Egyptian government refused Admiral Camara’s request to buy coal, and also refused to allow him to hire a hundred and fifty native stokers.

The U. S. transport Yale, laden with troops, arrived at Daiquiri.(32)

The President sent to Congress the following messages: 

To the Congress of the United States: - On the morning of the third of June, 1898, Assistant Naval Constructor Richmond P. Hobson, U. S. N., with a volunteer crew of seven men, in charge of the partially dismantled collier Merrimac, entered the fortified harbour of Santiago, Cuba, for the purpose of sinking the collier in the narrowest portion of the channel and thus interposing a serious obstacle to the egress of the Spanish fleet, which had recently entered that harbour.

“This enterprise, demanding coolness, judgment and bravery amounting to heroism, was carried into successful execution in the face of a persistent fire from the hostile fleet as well as from the fortifications on shore.  Rear-Admiral Sampson, commander-in-chief of our naval force in Cuban waters, in an official report addressed to the Secretary of the Navy, referring to Mr. Hobson’s gallant exploit, says: 

“’I decided to make the harbour entrance secure against the possibility of egress of the Spanish ships by obstructing the narrow part of the entrance, by sinking a collier at that point.

“’Mr. Hobson, after several days consideration, presented a solution which he considered would ensure the immediate sinking of the ship when she had reached the desired point in the channel.  The plan contemplated a crew of only seven men, and Mr. Hobson begged that it might be entrusted to him.

“’I cannot myself too earnestly express my appreciation of the conduct of Mr. Hobson and his gallant crew.  I venture to say that a more brave and daring thing has not been done since Cushing blew up the Albemarle.’

“The members of the crew who were with Mr. Hobson on the memorable occasion have already been rewarded for their services by advancement, which, under the provisions of law and regulation, the Secretary of the Navy was authorised to make; and the nomination to the Senate of Naval Cadet Powell, who, in a steam launch, followed the Merrimac on her perilous trip, for the purpose of rescuing her force after the sinking of that vessel, to be advanced in rank to the grade of ensign, has been prepared and will be submitted.

“Cushing, with whose gallant act in blowing up the Albemarle, during the civil war, Admiral Sampson compares Mr. Hobson’s sinking of the Merrimac, received the thanks of Congress upon recommendation of the President, by name, and was in consequence, under the provisions of Section 1,508 of the Revised Statutes, advanced one grade, such advancement embracing fifty-six numbers.  The section cited applies, however, to line officers only, and Mr. Hobson, being a member of the staff of the navy, could not, under the provisions, be so advanced.

“In considering the question of suitably rewarding Assistant Naval Constructor Hobson for his valiant conduct on the occasion referred to, I have deemed it proper to address this message to you with the recommendation that he receive the thanks of Congress, and further that he be transferred to the line of the navy and promoted to such position therein as the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, may determine.

“Mr. Hobson’s transfer from the construction corps to the line is fully warranted, he having received the necessary technical training as a graduate of the naval academy, where he stood number one in his class, and such action is recommended partly in deference to what is understood to be his own desire, although, he being a prisoner now in the hands of the enemy, no direct communication on the subject has been received from him, and partly for the reason that the abilities displayed by him at Santiago are of such a character as to indicate especial fitness for the duties of the line.

“WILLIAM MCKINLEY. “Executive Mansion, June 27.

The second message was as follows: 

To the Congress of the United States: - On the eleventh day of May, 1898, there occurred a conflict in the bay of Cardenas, Cuba, in which the naval torpedo-boat Winslow was disabled, her commander wounded, and one of her officers and a part of her crew killed by the enemy’s fire.

“In the face of a most galling fire from the enemy’s guns the revenue cutter Hudson, commanded by First Lieut.  Frank H. Newcomb, U. S. Revenue Cutter Service, rescued the disabled Winslow and her wounded crew.  The commander of the Hudson kept his vessel in the very hottest fire of the action, although in constant danger of going ashore on account of the shallow water, until he finally got a line made fast to the Winslow, and towed that vessel out of range of the enemy’s guns, a deed of special gallantry.

“I recommend that, in recognition of the signal act of heroism of First Lieut.  Frank H. Newcomb, U. S. Revenue Cutter Service, above set forth, the thanks of Congress be extended to him and to his officers and men of the Hudson, and that a gold medal of honour be presented to Lieutenant Newcomb, a silver medal of honour to each of his officers, and a bronze medal of honour to each member of his crew who served with him at Cardenas.

(Signed) “WILLIAM MCKINLEY.”

The President also sent the following special nomination to Congress: 

“EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON, June 27, 1898.

To the Senate of the United States: - I nominate Naval Cadet Joseph W. Powell to be advanced two numbers under the provisions of section 1,506 of the Revised Statutes, and to be an ensign in the navy, for extraordinary heroism while in charge of the steam launch which accompanied the collier Merrimac, for the purpose of rescuing her gallant force when that vessel was, under the command of Naval Constructor Hobson, run into the mouth of the harbour of Santiago, Cuba, on the third instant, and dexterously sunk in the channel.

(Signed) “WILLIAM MCKINLEY.”

June 27. The third fleet of vessels, laden with soldiers, sailed from San Francisco for the Philippines.

From London the following news was received from the Canary Islands: 

Most of the new forts have guns mounted, but are still quite exposed to view.  The earthworks are not nearly completed.  It is reported that ten thousand more soldiers are on the way from Spain.  Of these five thousand are for the Grand Canary, and the others are for Teneriffe.  The Spanish government is determined to hold the islands at any cost.

Nearly all business is absolutely at a standstill, and many of the sugar mills are closed.  If this state of uncertainty continues much longer it will mean starvation to the working classes.  All lights that can be seen from the sea are ordered extinguished at night, though the lighthouse on Isletta is still lighted.

The U. S. S. Yankee, off the Isle of Pines, captured and destroyed the Spanish sloops Nemesia, of Batabano, Amistad and Manuelita, of Coloma, and the pilot-boats Luz and Jacinto.

June 28. The President issued a proclamation extending the blockade of Cuba to the southern coast, from Cape Frances to Cape Cruz, inclusive, and also blockading San Juan, Porto Rico.

The proclamation was as follows: 

Whereas, for the reasons set forth in my proclamation of April 22, 1898, a blockade of ports on the northern coast of Cuba, from Cardenas to Bahia Honda, inclusive, and of the port of Cienfuegos, on the south coast of Cuba, was declared to have been instituted, and

Whereas, it has become desirable to extend the blockade to other southern ports,

“Now, therefore, I, William McKinley, President of the United States, do hereby declare and proclaim that, in addition to the blockade of the ports specified in my proclamation of April 22, 1898, the United States of America has instituted and will maintain an effective blockade of all of the ports on the south coast of Cuba, from Cape Frances to Cape Cruz, inclusive, and also of the port of San Juan in the island of Porto Rico.

“Neutral vessels lying in any of the ports to which the blockade is by the present proclamation extended, will be allowed thirty days to issue therefrom with cargo.”

The Spanish cruiser Antonio Lopez, while trying to enter the river San Juan, near San Juan de Porto Rico, secretly, with a cargo of provisions and war material, was detected by two American war-ships, but escaped by swiftly changing her course.  Her captain, determined to land his cargo, headed for the shore at Salinas.  The shock of grounding exploded the boiler.  The Spanish gunboats Concha and Isabella issued to the assistance of the Antonio Lopez, whereupon the Americans withdrew, and the Antonio Lopez landed her cargo.

Captain-General Augusti sent the following by cable from Manila to the government at Madrid: 

“The situation is still as grave.  I continue to maintain my position inside the line of blockhouses, but the enemy is increasing in numbers, as the rebels occupy the provinces, which are surrendering.  Torrential rains are inundating the entrenchments, rendering the work of defence difficult.  The number of sick among the troops is increasing, making the situation very distressing, and causing increased desertions of the native soldiers.

“It is estimated that the insurgents number thirty thousand armed with rifles, and one hundred thousand armed with swords, etc.

“Aguinaldo has summoned me to surrender, but I have treated his proposals with disdain, for I am resolved to maintain the sovereignty of Spain and the honour of the flag to the last extremity.

“I have more than one thousand sick and two hundred wounded.  The citadel has been invaded by the suburban inhabitants, who have abandoned their homes, owing to the barbarity of the rebels.  These inhabitants constitute an embarrassment, aggravating the situation, in view of a bombardment, which, however, is not seriously apprehended for the moment.”

The captain-general’s family was made prisoners by the insurgents several days prior to the sending of this despatch, and all efforts to effect their release had thus far been in vain.

From all parts of the world the Spanish people, during the last days of June, looked toward Santiago de Cuba, in whose harbour was imprisoned Cervera’s fleet, for there only could they hope to resist the American arms.