The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 39, July 1935 - April, 1936

The "IHarriet Lane"

Before giving new material about the Harriet Lane I should
recapitulate what has already been stated to the Historical Associa-
tion by Tucker in the April, 1918, QUARTERLY, and by Trexler in
the October, 1931, issue:
The United States Steamer Harriet Lane was the most im-
pressive of a little fleet of Federal vessels which in October, 1862,
seized the harbor of Galveston, after having blockaded it for some
time; the city lay under the guns of the ships-the Westfield,
Owasco, Harriet Lane, Clifton and Sachem. About 300 Massa-
The "Lines" of the HARRIET LANE
chusetts infantrymen, of the 42nd Volunteers, made an insufficient
garrison, being not numerous enough to patrol the city at night
in the face of a greater force of Confederates. Several supply
ships lay in the harbor.
Major General J. Bankhead Magruder, C. S. A., had determined
to drive the Federals from Galveston. With artillery, his forces
marched from Houston, and a Confederate fleet of cottonclad river
boats was to attack simultaneously with the land forces, at mid-
night on New Year's Eve, 1862. Magruder fired the first gun,
the signal for the attack, himself. The Confederate ships Bayou
City and Neptune rammed and boarded the Harriet Lane, smashing
her vulnerable side wheel, and clearing her decks with a heavy and
*Read at the Thirty-eighth Annual Meeting of the Texas State His-
torical Association, Garrison Hall, University of Texas, Austin. May 4,

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 39, July 1935 - April, 1936. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed July 6, 2015.