At Liverpool, England, on January 7th 1901, at the residence of his
son-in-law, M. H. Maxwell Esq., an alderman of that city, died James
Dunwoody Bulloch, a distinguished officer in the navy of the Confederate
States, and, during the greater part of the war, the trusted financial
agent of the Confederacy in Europe.|
The important role that Capt. Bulloch played, and the eminent service he rendered to his struggling countrymen has never been known or adequately appreciated; but history, to which everything is ultimately known, will be busy with his name and fame, and will write on its brightest pages the heroic devotion of this man, who, taking counsel of his countries necessities, was content to sacrifice all personal ambitions to her needs.
It was not his privilege to command at sea during the war, but he constructed
the ladders by which other men climbed to fame, and the success of the
Confederate commerce destroyers was primarily due to the indefatigable
exertions and wise counsels of Capt. Bulloch.
At this time, Semmes, in the little Sumter, was presenting an impudently bold front on the high seas to the overwhelming Federal navy, and his success against the commerce of the enemy inspired our Navy Department with the desire to re-enforce the Sumter with one or more suitable cruisers. Capt. Bulloch was again selected for the important and delicate work, and, with enlarged powers, and very little else in the shape of "ways and means," landed in Liverpool on the 4th of June 1861. The Alexandria, Florida, and Alabama, model gunboats and sui generis for the work intended, built within the first six months of him taking hold, sufficiently attest the ability and energy of the man; and if to this be added the numerous cargoes ofarms, ammunition and supplies he purchased and dispatched successfully through the blockade, it will be recognized that James D. Bulloch, in the early part og the war, was a host in himself.
Uncomplainingly, at the earnest solicitation of the President, Capt. Bulloch yielded command of the Florida and the Alabama successively to others, and allowed not disappointed ambition to change in one iota his supreme devotion to his dearly loved South. Subsequently he built two ironclads on the Mersey, but, owing to the ill-concealed partizanship and one-sided neutrality of the British Government, recalled by the recent death of the Queen, they were illegaly seized and incorporated into the British navy. The same thing happened in France, and the seizure, before completion, of two of Capt. Bulloch`s ironclads accentuated the wisdom of the biblical maxim, "put not your trust in Princes." However, owing to Bulloch`s strategy and wonderful management, the Confederacy afterwards came into possession of one of these rams, which, under the name of Stonewall, and under the command of Capt. Thomas J. Page, of glorious memory, exposed to the eyes of all Europe the cowardice of the Federal frigates Niagara and Sacramento off Ferrol, Spain in 1865. Failing to provoke Commodore Craven to fight, the Stonewall sailed away to our Southern coast, and the surrender of Lee - the end of all things in this world for many of us - found her in the harbour of Havana, the prize, but only by inheritance, of her enemy.
The Shenandoah, purchased and fitted out by Bulloch, made her wonderful cruise under his instructions, and it was his conception and plan that enabled Capt. Waddell to retaliate for the infamous "stone blockade" of Charleston harbour in the early part of the war, by wholly obliterating from the seas the whaling fleet of the United States.
But to write fully the history of James D. Bulloch would be to write much of the history of the Confederate States, for although a naval officer and supposed to be acting only in a naval capacity, he was intimately connected as well with the diplomacy of our country, and stood high in the confidence of Messrs. Mason, Sidell and other accredited agents abroad. During the latter days of the Confederacy the daily rations of Lee`s army were almost wholly supplied through the blockade by his indefatigable exertions, and but for him there is no doubt that the invincible remnants which succumbed to starvation at Appomattox C.H. would have had their agony shortened by some months.
Bulloch`s revered name stands associated with every amiable and noble
quality, and as his merits cannot be enhanced by eulogy, so likewise can
no detraction tarnish his glory.
Born in Librty County, GA., in 1825, of distinguished ancestry, his great grandfather having been the first Governor of Georgia, after the revolution, his predilections for a seafaring life were nurtured by his residence on salt water and boyhood sports. Entering the United States navy about 1840, he rose through all the intermediate grades to a lieutenant; but, finding promotion slow and naval pay inadequate to the needs of his growing family, he resigned his commission and accepted service in the Cromwell steamship line, running between New York and New Orleans. The commercial experience he gained, and his intimate relations with business men, stood him in good stead afterwards, and it can be truthfully said of Capt. Bulloch, what he so gracefully said of Commodore Tattnall: "He always brought to the execution of a task more ability than was required for its accomplishment."
The beginning of the war found Capt. Bulloch in command of the Bienville, which afterwards, in the United States navy, became a "pestilent hornet" to our blockade runners, but, promptly resigning from the merchant service, and sacrificing to the North the accumulation of years, he embraced the cause of his people and brought to their succor the matured experience and ripened judgement of forty-five years of earnest living.
There are but few characters in which so many amiable and shining qualities joined united. His affable and engaging manners, his great, big heart full of sympathy for distress, and his unfeigned piety gained for him the love and esteem of all. His mind was abundantly stored, and he had the happy faculty of communicating his ideas in an easy-flowing and perspicious manner. Although he experienced great physical debility during the last few months of his life, the powers of his mind were unimpaired, and, surrounded by his immediate family, he gently yeilded up a life of seventy-seven years, which had been so full of service to God and country. His faithful wife died a few years ago,, and of his children two daughters remain. Their best inheritance is the remembrance of thier father`s many noble Christian vitues.
"Blessed are the people who have a noble history, and read it." In this respect our Southern people are peculiarly blessed in the propietorship of
In arms who triumphed, or in arts excelled,
Chiefs graced with scars and prodigal of blood,
Stern patriots who for sacred freedom stood,
Just men by whom impartial laws are given,
And saints who taught and led the way to Heaven.
and in association with the honored names of Washington, Lee, Jackson, Johnston, Tattnall, Buchanan, Semmes, and a host of Southern heroes in the love, reverance, and affection of his people shall ever be found that of