From the Archives - The Battle of Balaclava
On November 17, 1854, The New-York Times published the first report to reach America of the Battle of Balaclava, fought just three weeks earlier.
|The British steamer Trent left the coast of the Crimea on the 25th October, and arrived on the following day at Varna, whence a dispatch, sent for transmission by telegraph to the nearest station, reached the French and English Governments, on November 1. Up to the time of the Trent's departure the siege and bombardment were going on with regularity and success. So heavy had been the fire of the besieging batteries, and so terrible was the loss of life in the town of Sebastopol, that the air was reported to be tainted by the number of unburned dead. Guns had been brought to bear upon the gates, and Admiral Nachimoff had been killed by the fragment of a shell. If this last circumstance be confirmed, it is remarkable that the two chief officers of the Russian navy who planned and executed the attack on Sinope, should have both been killed within a year. A report was circulated in Constantinople that lord Raglan had expressed his opinion in favor of a prolonged bombardment in preference to an immediate assault. Having accomplished the prodigious labor of conveying the heavy guns and ammunition, and opening a successful fire on Sebastopol, the reduction of the place is considered only a question of time, and the operations are carried on with comparatively small loss to the allied forces. An assault, on the contrary, though it might lead to more rapid success, would cost innumerable lives and materially weaken the besieging armies.