by U.S. Consul Thomas Dudley
American (i.e., Federal) diplomatic officers
in the United Kingdom and France were always on the lookout for ships being outfitted as
Confederate naval vessels or as blockade runners. In Liverpool, U.S. Consul Thomas
Dudley began watching the work being done on Denbigh, and quickly learned a great
deal about the paddle steamer. Here is his report, dated October 20, 1863:
||Schooner rigged, side
wheel steamer "Denbigh" of Liverpool -- 162 tons. Captain McNevin
Carriers -- Northe Dock for Bermuda & Havannah [sic.]. Mose & Co. Cosignees.
The following is her present description, subject to alteration:
Built of Iron. Marked draft of water -- 7 feet fore &
aft. Hull painted black. Artificial quarter galleries. Elliptic stern.
Straight stem. Name at the bows gilt, on a blue ground. Wheel;
binnacle. House with skylight on top. Boat painted white in iron swing davits
on port quarter. Boats painted white, abreast of mainmast. House athwartships
between paddle boxes, with binacle on top. Funnell [sic.] or smokestack painted
black, with bright copper steam pipe after part of same. Side houses.
Hurricane deck; foremast, through same. Masts bright; mast heads, top caps,
crosstrees, bowsprit and gaff painted white. Inside of bulwarks & c.
painted cream color. On her trial trip she attained the speed of 10 1/2 knots.
Godfrey, late coal agent for the Confederates in
Cardiff, is said to be the owner of the Denbigh. His wife and himself are going out in
her. Kragan & Davis, two of the late crew of the "Florida," met and
spoke to him in Cardiff; he (Godfrey) knew Davis directly he saw him, both having been
well acquainted. Her crew consists of Captain, two mates, two engineers, six seamen, seven
firemen, cook and steward.
Sailed Monday Oct. 19, 1863.