On June 30, a Union gunboat came into Tampa Bay, turned her broadside on the town, and opened her ports. The gunboat then dispatched a launch carrying 20 men and a lieutenant under a flag of truce demanding the surrender of Tampa. The Confederates refused, and the gunboat opened fire. The officer then informed the Confederates that shelling would commence at 6:00 pm after allowing time to evacuate non-combatants from the city. Firing continued sporadically into the afternoon of July 1, when the Federal gunboat withdrew.