Page:Item 5 1853.pdf/255

From Historical Hastings
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JUNE 16, 1855.

PROGRESS OF THE WAR, AND OTHER EVENTS.

MAY, 22.—The French troops before Sebastopol, determined to carry some of the Russian counter approaches commence a tremendous onslaught and succeed in taking the works, but the heavily armed batteries in the rear compel them to relinquish the position with a loss of 1,000 to 2,000 men. The Russian loss is still greater

MAY, 23.—The French troops under General Peltisier renew the attack on the Russian positions with increased success, driving the enemy out of them and turning the conquered works against him. The loss on both sides is terrific.

MAY, 24.—While the British troops in the Crimea are commemorating their Queen's birthday with double rations of porter, and a strong force of French, Turks and Sardinians under General Canrobert, are marching across the Tchernaya, driving the Russians before them, and establishing themselves at Tchourgoun, Kamara &c, the Expeditionary army of 15,000 men under Sir G. Brown, together with the naval squadron commanded by Lyons & Bruat, are performing an equally successful celebration of this auspicious day. Under cover of the ships’ guns, the army is landed, which immediately ascends the heights, while the steamers of light draught proceed towards Kertch & Yenikale[Notes 1]. The enemy, surprised by the rapidity of the movements, blows up [Illegible[Notes 2]] his fortifications, 3 steamers & other armed vessels, and retires, leaving us masters of the place This unlooked for success deprives the Russians of stores sufficient to ration an army of 100,000 for 4 months, while 17,000 tons of coal become available for our steamers. In this affair, the Snake gun vessel plays an important part;—intercepting & engaging a Russian war steamer, and exchanging shots with the batteries at the same time. . After setting the steamer on fire with her Lancaster shells, this saucy little craft does battle with the batteries & 3 other steamers that bear down upon her, until recalled by signal.

MAY, 26.—In the sea of Azoff, the boats of the allied squadron are engaged in destroying the enemy’s vessels and stores near the shore, while the steamers chase and destroy in other directions.

MAY, 27.—Cap. E. Lyons, with the ships under his orders, anchors at day-dawn off the town of Berdiansk, where he finds, run on shore, and burnt to the water’s edye, the four steamers that escaped from Kertch. The marines are at once landed, and the destruction of £30,000 worth of property is effected.

MAY, 28.—From Berdiansk, the vessels commanded by Cap. Lyons, arrive off Arabat, engage a fort of 30 guns, & blow up a Russian magazine. The precision of the Allies’ fire causes great loss to the enemy, while, from the skilful manoeuvring of the vessels and other precautions, only one man is wounded on our side —The Russians evacuate Soudjak Kaleh, after burning the principal buildings, and spiking 66 of their own guns.

MAY, 20.—From Arabat, the squadron proceeds to Genitchi, and on a refusal of the Russians to surrender their vessels & stores, the town is attacked at long range by the steamers, while the small boats, under the direction of Lieut. MacKENZIE, effect a passage through the narrow straits, and set fire to 90 vessels and all the corn stores. In this latter enterprise, only one man is wounded, although exposed to the fire of four field pieces and within range of Cossack musketry. Up to this time, and within four days, the Russians have lost in the sea of Azoff, four war steamers, 246 merchant vessels, 100 efficient guns, and magazines of immense value.

JUNE, 1.—The French troops in the Crimea do considerable damage to the Flagstaff Bastion by the springing of two mines, Their engineers discover 24 infernal machines placed by the enemy just beneath the sod, in such a manner as to enable the French to become their own exterminators.

JUNE, 5.—Anapa is abandoned by the Russians to the Circassians. —16 Russian merchantmen are captured & destroyed near Cronstadt —13 youths near East Clythe, are suddenly plunged ‘into a watery grave, by the capsizing of a small boat. “Immagine(sic)” says the John o' Groats Journal, “a whole community of some 16 or 20 scattered houses, and the members of which are all more or less nearly related to each other; picture the grief of one family bereaved at a blow of three promising sons; others, who have lost two, and the ties of relationship that bound the whole village together, and you may be able to form an idea of the woful(sic) spectacle

JUNE, 7.—At 6.30. p: m., the Mamelon works in the Crimea, are attacked by the French, with extraordinary impetuosity, and within the space of one hour, are taken possession of, together with 502 prisoners and 73 cannon. The Russians are driven to the rear, and, subsequently, two redoubts, resting upon the Careening Harbour, are occupied by our gallant Allies. This important engagement results in the complete investment of the south side of Sebastopol, and by which means, the works of the besiegers are advanced to the sea within the harbor, & threaten to destroy the ships. Meanwhile, the British troops are equally alert,—forcing their way in the most daring manner, and effecting a lodgement in the “Quarries.” These daring and successful achievements show that, under a determined and skilful leader, the French army has more than effaced the slight check it received in a previous attempt to capture these important positions; but, above all, they show that, the bravery and perseverance of the allied troops in materially diminishing their difficulties, & that they are steadily advancing towards the successful termination of their enterprise.


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