There is a little problem and a mythology going on with this conception. I will use USS Texas as the example and the Battle of Santiago de Cuba Bay as the event. The Texas took the Infant Maria Teresa under fire after its counterturn and all back full to avoid an accidental mid-battle collision. The situation with the sun, clouds, wind drifting funnel and gun propellant smoke and the shell splashes from the several American ships, most of them shooting at the Infant Maria Teresa had confused an aimer of the number three six inch gun casemate mount on the Texas' port battery. He asked his gun captain, an old reprobate chief left over from the American Civil War: "How do we know if we hit anything through all of the shell splashes and smoke?"The biggest problem with the Intermediate Pre-Dreadnought's is that mixing 12--inch, 8- to 10-inch and 7-inch and smaller guns lead to the near impossibility of determining what shell splash belonging to what gun. And with Fire Control in its infancy you can well wonder about the lack of hits.
Dreadnought's uniform Main Battery changed all that...
The old geezer told him: "Shell splashes means you are aiming too low. Raise the angle a little on the quadrant and shoot and look. Count to three by seconds. If you see sparks between two and three, keep your bearing on her and pour it on fast, because you are hitting her, you damned idiot."
IOW, the splashes were, at those typical ranges, evidence of bad shooting, as over or short. The gunners were looking for sparks of steel on steel, or for fire to break out after a shot in spite of the chaos, to show hits. Once a battery got a solution, the gunners went into rapid fire until they dropped from exhaustion.
The problem of good shooting, is that if fires do break out on an enemy ship with a lot of woodwork and the ready ammunition starts to cook off, it looks like the enemy shoots back hard at you to the gunners. The frightened American gunners kept pouring it on, long after an enemy ship struck colors or was completely mission killed. They could not see well enough through their own guns' smoke clouds to assess their results. Also, as the gunners shot into the flames, it was almost impossible not to shoot a bit high. So shooting accuracy fell off and the needless slaughter of a helpless enemy crew ensued as superstructure rakes instead of waterline hits were the results of the shots that hit, along with far too many overshoots that carried off into shore. That is what happened at Manila Bay and to a certain extent at Bahia de Santiago, and earned the American navy an undeserved rascally reputation as ruthless merciless killers, once it was apparent to foreign observers, present, that the Spanish fleets were beaten.