see it clearly

Defense of the Sabine Pass

Sabine Pass is the outlet to Sabine Lake, which is on the border line of Texas and Louisiana and about five miles back from the Gulf of Mexico. The Sabine River, which flows into the lake, forms a considerable portion of the boundary between the two states. Sabine City was the terminus of a railroad running a considerable distance through eastern Texas, and which connected with another road leading to Houston, then the capital of the state.

Defense of the Sabine Pass

General Banks, who commanded the Federal forces in that region, fitted out this expedition with the idea of landing a large force to march in Houston, planning to follow it up with reinforcements until he would have a force of about 15,000 concentrated there.

The fort at Sabine Pass was garrisoned by a company of forty-even Irishmen commanded by Lieutenant Richard W. Dowling, who was usually known as Dick Dowling. The other members of the company were as follows:

Patrick Abbott
Michael Carr
Abner R. Carter
Patrick Clair
James Corcoran
Hugh Deagan
Michael Delaney
Thomas Daugherty
John A. Drummond
Daniel Donovan
Michael Eagan
David Fitzgerald
Patrick Fitzgerald
James Fleming
John Flood
William Gleason
John Hassott
James Higgins
Timothy Hurley
John Hennessey
Thomas Hagerty
Timothy Huggins
William Hardin
W.L. Jett
Patrick Malone
Thomas McKernon
John McKeever
Alexander McCabe
Timothy McDonough
Patrick McDonnell
John McGrath
John McNealis
Daniel McMurray
Michael Monoghan
Richard O'Hara
Laurence Plunkett
Edward Pritchard
Maurice Powers
Charles Rheins
Thomas Sullivan
Michael Sullivan
Patrick Sullivan
Matthew Walsh
Jack W. White
John Wesley
Joseph Wilson

This company was known as the Davis Guard. At the time of the attack, forty-one out of the forty-seven were in the fort, one being absent on leave and five sick in the hospital. In addition to these were two officers, Lieutenant N.W. Smith and Dr. C.H. Bailey, the post surgeon, who, being in the neighborhood, volunteered for the occasion, making forty-three defenders in all. Lossing, describing this action in the Field Book of the Civil War, states that the losses of the attacking party were two hundred prisoners and about fifty killed and wounded, in addition to the two gun boats which mounted fifteen heavy guns. The defenders did not lose a man, and it is said that it was quite a problem for so small a body of men to take charge of such a large number of prisoners, and that when the garrison marched out to secure the prisoners, but very few men were left in the fort with instructions to most energetically patrol the ramparts so as to create the impression that the fort had not been left empty.

After this defeat, the proposed movement on Houston was abandoned, much to the gratification of citizens of that part of Texas, and on the 8th of September, 1864, the first anniversary of the battle, the ladies of Houston presented a medal to each member of the Davis Guard, and to the two volunteers who were with them. Forty-nine of these medals were presented, those members of the Guard, who were unavoidably absent, also receiving them. It is stated that some time later President Davis visited that locality, and the Guard had another medal made and presented it to him.