Order of Rear-Admiral Dahlgren, U.S. Navy, commanding South Atlantic Blockading Squadron,
ordering defensive measures against Confederate torpedo boats.
Off Morris Island, South Carolina, January 7, 1864.
I have reliable information that the rebels have two torpedo boats ready for service, which may be expected on the first night when the water is suitable for their movement. One of these is the "David," which attacked the Ironsides in October; the other is similar to it.
There is also one of another kind [H. L. Hunley], which is nearly submerged and can be entirely so. It is intended to go under the bottoms of vessels and there operate.
This is believed by my informant to be sure of well working, though from bad management it has hitherto met with accidents, and was lying off Mount Pleasant two nights since.
There being every reason to expect a visit from some or all of these torpedoes, the greatest vigilance will be needed to guard against them.
The ironclads must have their fenders rigged out and their own boats in motion about them.