CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, REPORTS, AND RETURNS OF THE CONFEDERATE AUTHORITIES, DECEMBER 20, 1860-JUNE 30, 1862.HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DISTRICT, Savannah, October 5, 1861. Hon. J. P. BENJAMIN, Acting Secretary of War, Richmond, Va.:
SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 29th of September by the hands of my aide-de-camp, Captain Clinch. That the course I found it my duty to pursue in an emergency with regard to a portion of the arms landed in Savannah from the steamer Bermuda does not meet with the approval of the Department is to me a source of sincere regret. I would content myself, however, with the reflection that I had discharged my whole duty according to my best judgment, and bow in silence to the decision of the proper authority, did not the terms in which you are pleased to characterize my conduct, and the illustrations to which you resort to make manifest its impropriety, force me either to call your attention to some of them or to consent at once to an entire surrender of my own self-respect. When such an alternative is presented I cannot hesitate as to my duty. Indulge me while I state the facts briefly: For several days after the arrival of the Bermuda at Savannah it was impossible to ascertain here whether the arms and munitions by the steamer were public or private property. Sorely pressed for the want of arms, and authorized as I was by the War Department to organize the necessary force for the defense of this coast, I communicated promptly with the consignees in Charleston, and wrote and telegraphed the Adjutant--General on the subject. I am not aware that I transcended my authority in this. There was no reply to either my letter or telegraph to the Adjutant-General, though these applications were certainly most respectful in terms and directly connected with my official duties. Repeated inquiries from day to day satisfied me that neither the ordnance officer nor quartermaster of this command (to whose care would naturally have been committed such portions of the cargo as appertained to each of these departments), nor any other Confederate officer, had any control or supervision over these arms, so invaluable to the Confederate Government. Without reference even to my extreme desire to procure a portion of these arms for my command, as the military commander of this district I did not feel that I was officious in exercising some general supervision over, or at least manifesting profound interest in, so much valuable public property, for I had not then been informed by the War Department that this was no more to be expected of me "than that I would assume to exercise authority in Virginia or Missouri." In this state of uncertainty and anxiety I received an application from the collector of this port to place a guard over certain arms and munitions believed to be the property of the Confederate States. It was after this, and when the report that the enemy's fleet was intended for the coast of Georgia had caused great excitement and alarm among the good people within the limits of my command, that I took possession of a portion of these arms, notifying the Department promptly of my action in the premises. The Department seems to treat this matter as though the arms were by my act placed out of its reach, or even sent "beyond seas," whereas they were simply taken possession of by an ordnance officer of the Confederate service under my command, and such as were issued at all were placed in the hands of troops mustered in for the war, subject to be ordered anywhere or disarmed, at the pleasure of the Government, when the emergency was over; and the result has shown the correctness of this view, for the order of the Department touching these very arms has now been executed to the letter, without obstacle or delay. I was not a little surprised to learn from your letter that instead of asking instructions I had "informed the Department by telegraph of my intention to seize these arms, to which no other reply could be made," &c. If I ever sent any such dispatch, neither my memory nor my copy book recalls it, and should it have any existence, I beg to ask the favor of you to forward me a copy of it from the files of the Department. I know of but two dispatches sent by me on this subject, the first to the Adjutant-General, as follows:
SEPTEMBER 20, 1861.
I earnestly request that the arms and munitions of war by steamer Bermuda now here may not leave Savannah until you receive my letter of this date. The second, addressed to the Secretary of War, in reply to one warning me as to the intended attack on Brunswick, &c., and dated 25th of September, was as follows: I can do nothing for want of arms, unless I hold those from steamer Bermuda. I sent to-day a special agent to Richmond on this subject. There is an entire absence of any expression of intention in either of these, and both of them simply and earnestly ask the assistance of the Department. I will here add that if in all matters of importance appertaining to this military district I delay action until I can receive instructions from Richmond, my presence here can be of little importance in any emergency, for the average time consumed in asking for and receiving instructions or replies of any kind is at least ten days, so great is the pressure of correspondence on the Department. Was there no emergency to justify my act? Aside from the rumors with which the public ear was filled, the Governor of Georgia notified me of a private dispatch from Richmond announcing that the mammoth fleet of the enemy was intended for Brunswick, on this coast. The same information was dispatched directly to me by Hon. Howell Cobb and by the Secretary of War, the latter on the same day, though after I had sent my agent to Richmond. Under these circumstances, had the enemy obtained a footing on this coast for the want of a force to resist, while I had unarmed men under my command and arms in abundance boxed up in a warehouse near by, I never could have justified myself before any tribunal, military, civil, or social. In the trying and almost unaided position in which I am placed, pardon me for saying that it is truly painful to have it intimated by the Department that I have utterly misconceived my powers and duties and, indeed, that I am ignorant of the first principles of organization; that the Department "acts through its appropriate bureaus." I had hoped that an early military education, followed by some experience in the military service of my country, would have protected me, even after many years spent in civil life, from official suggestions so mortifying to manly pride. While I hold a commission those in authority over me have only to command and I obey. If, however, my conduct, when left without instructions, deserves to be characterized by the Department as it has been through your letter of the 29th of September, I respectfully ask that the facts may be ascertained and passed upon by a military tribunal. I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant, R. LAWTON, Brigadier-General, Commanding. O.R.--SERIES IV--VOLUME I
Regimental Duty-Scouting and Courier assignments Southeast Georgia
THE OPERATIONS ON THE COASTS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLORIDA FROM APRIL 12, 1862, TO JUNE 11,CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING SPECIALLY TO 1863. CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#11 CAMP CLINCH, December 20, 1862. Lieut. Col. D. L. CLINCH, Waynesville:
COLONEL: At the special request of old Henry (who I wrote you had come over from the island) I again write in relation to the attack upon Charleston. As he was raised near the city he feels a deep interest in it. He says they are going to make great efforts to take it, that he overheard officers say that a few boats would engage the fort, while forty would land a large force somewhere near the city, and that they expected to take the city with this land force; a great many negroes would fight with them; he cannot tell where this place is they are going to land. We asked when Savannah would be attacked. He said the Yankees say there is too much Northern property in Savannah that would be injured if an attack was made upon the city, and that Savannah was different from Charleston, as Charleston gave the first offense, and before they got through with it one stone shall not be left upon another. He says preparations were being made to plant an immense quantity of cotton on the island next summer, but that one of their spies returned on Thursday night and reported that I had come back from Savannah and had got permission to make an attack upon the island; that I was fixing up boats upon the Altamaha, and that the cars were bringing more troops for the attack. This spy stated he heard me tell one of the officers these things. This is a lie, but a conversation I had with Major Harris must have been overheard by some accursed traitor in our camps and communicated to the spy. After getting your approval to make the attack upon the Pike's Bluff pickets I went quietly to work fixing the boats. The only person I spoke to was Mr. William Couper. I thought it best to get his consent to use the Hopeton boats.
One night last week I spoke to Major Harris about it; that conversation was undoubtedly overheard. So soon as these things were communicated the Governor made them a speech and ordered everything to leave the island. On Monday night, in the hurry and confusion of leaving, he gave the sentinel the slip. His limbs are much swollen from long confinement. As soon as he can get about I will send him to you. He says their loss upon the Saint Simon's while we were there was some 15 or 18, and that he knows it to be the fact that the buzzards destroyed their dead while they surrounded the place. He also stated that a child and 3 negroes were killed in the scrape upon the Altamaha. There were no whites in the boat. I have no doubt but that the gunboat that left the sound Tuesday took off the last negro on the island. The most of them were on board before Henry left. Would it not be well, colonel, to warn our commanders of this land attack against Charleston? Very respectfully, W. M. HAZZARD, Captain Glynn Guards. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XIV
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING SPECIALLY TO THE OPERATIONS ON THE COASTS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLORIDA FROM APRIL 12, 1862, TO JUNE 11, 1863.CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#14HDQRS. DEPT. SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA, Charleston, S.C., March 6, 1863. Brig. Gen. H. W. MERCER, Commanding District of Georgia, Savannah:
GENERAL: The letter of N. B. Clinch, adjutant Fourth Georgia Cavalry, to Colonel Clinch, dated February 26, 1863, and forwarded through your headquarters, has been considered by the commanding general, who sanctions the proposed expedition for the capture of the Federal gunboats in the sound south of the Altamaha. You are therefore authorized to direct the necessary preparations for the adventure, and to do whatsoever you may regard as essential or calculated to insure success. Respectfully, your obedient servant, THOMAS JORDAN, Chief of Staff. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XIV
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING SPECIALLY TO THE OPERATIONS ON THE COASTS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLORIDA FROM APRIL 12, 1862, TO JUNE 11, 1863.CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#15 HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF EAST FLORIDA, Camp near Jacksonville, March 20, 1863. Brig. Gen. THOMAS JORDAN, Chief of Staff:
GENERAL: I have the honor to report that the enemy still occupy the town of Jacksonville. My command has been engaged in skirmishing with them constantly since their occupation, inflicting on them a considerable loss. The nature of the ground in rear of the town and the sweep of the enemy's fire from their gunboats over it, together with the inadequate result of compelling a merely temporary abandonment of the place by the enemy and then withdrawing for a new occupation by them, have induced me to withhold my troops from any great exposure.
The constant presence of five gunboats at Jacksonville, two of which carry a very heavy armament, and the great difficulty of getting my light field batteries in a position where the gunboats would be within reach of their effective fire before being exposed to a concentrated fire from all the enemy's heavy guns, have prevented me from making an attack on the town. I should not, however, have hesitated to attack and carry the place had there been any probability that the substantial result of holding it would be within reach of the means at my command.
The heavy guns and the force necessary to do this I have not at my command, nor have I any assurance that I can obtain them, and I have considered it my duty, unless the enemy should remove a sufficient number of his gunboats to enable me to strike an effective blow, not to expose my command to severe loss from firing which we have not now an opportunity of returning with effect.
The town is now strongly fortified in the rear, and this furnishes an additional reason for not venturing an attack, unless we had the heavy guns and the force necessary to hold it. One of the difficulties of the position is that unless I can place my guns in position to command the wharves and the ground below the town (which is very difficult to accomplish so long as the gunboats remain in front of the town), after approaching under the fire of their gunboats and batteries, I may find the enemy escaped on board his transports and rapidly passing beyond my fire, leaving my troops still exposed to his guns.
The enemy's force in Jacksonville consists of two regiments of black troops with white officers, commanded respectively by Colonels Montgomery and Higginson, largely reenforced, as we are advised by our pickets today, by troops supposed to be white. They are making prisoners of all male citizens found in Jacksonville, on the Saint John's River, who refuse to take the oath of allegiance, and holding them as hostages for their negro troops. They are robbing and plundering everything on the east bank of the Saint John's River, which is protected from us by their gunboats, and the river at almost all points above here is very wide and impassable without large boats.
The women and children, excepting five or six families, have been removed from town under a notification which I ordered Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick, commanding post, to send to Colonel Higginson, commanding negro troops at Jacksonville (copies of which and the reply thereto are herewith transmitted), in order that I might be at liberty to attack the town should a favorable opportunity present itself. They have been sent to Lake City, where some provision will be made for them.
The enemy have been expecting reinforcements of white troops, some of which are reported by our pickets to have arrived today. Their own statements and circumstances indicate that their probable policy is to occupy Jacksonville with white troops and send the negroes, with largely increased numbers, to Palatka, and then attempt to move amongst the plantations. If large numbers of negro troops are to be sent into East Florida, as seems now the intention of the enemy, with the Saint John's River as a base of operations held by their gunboats, and within easy access of the great depots of supplies and reinforcements at Port Royal and of occasional reinforcements from Fernandina and Saint Augustine, it will be impossible for the small number of troops in this district to render protection to every part of it.
I am compelled to keep one company at Tampa, one at Palatka, one near Fernandina, one on the coast between Bayport and Crystal River, three detachments on the Suwannee and at Cedar Keys, as corps of observation and to prevent negroes from escaping to the enemy. I would again call the attention of the commanding general to the want of arms for the new companies now being organized. I would also ask of the commanding general instructions as to the proper disposition of negroes captured with arms and serving under the enemy.
I would also report to the commanding general that General Cobb has sent me one large gun, Captain Gamble's battery of light artillery, and two new companies, about 40 men each, and that Colonel Clinch, commanding Fourth Georgia Cavalry, is here with three small pieces of artillery and 277 men. I have the honor to be, general, &c., JOS. FINEGAN, Brigadier-General, Commanding. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XIV
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING SPECIALLY TO THE OPERATIONS ON THE COASTS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLORIDA FROM APRIL 12, 1862, TO JUNE 11, 1863. CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#15 SPECIAL ORDERS, No. 180. HDQRS. DISTRICT OF EAST FLORIDA, Camp Finegan, March 22, 1863.Col. D. L. Clinch commanding Confederate States forces at this camp, will move the troops of this command to the hill on this side of the Three Mile Branch in the following order on tomorrow morning at 7 a.m.: 1st. Two batteries of artillery. 2d. All the cavalry that can be spared from picket duty. 3d. All the infantry and dismounted cavalry. The cavalry will be under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick. The artillery will be under the command of Major Thomas. The infantry under command of Major Brevard. The whole force will be under the command of Colonel Clinch. Captain Buckman, in addition to his ordinary duty of keeping the command supplied with ammunition, will be charged with the management of the 32-pounder rifle gun on platform car. He will be required to see that the gun and its support are protected with cotton and entrenchments for the men. The line of battle will be formed on the hill on this side of the Three Mile Branch. Every effort will be made by our skirmishers to advance to the ground selected, and, failing in this, we will open on them with the 32-pounder rifle gun. Colonel Clinch will require the supply of ammunition to be ample for a protracted engagement. The men will be required to carry two days' rations cooked. The camp will be left under command of a suitable officer, with the camp guard of this day. The men will be required to be kept under arms ready to move. The train will be ordered by Colonel Clinch to move the infantry and dismounted cavalry. The chief surgeon, with his assistants, will be required to be on the ground with ambulances and necessary surgical appliances. By order of Brigadier-General Finegan, commanding: W. CALL, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XIV
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING SPECIALLY TO THE OPERATIONS ON THE COASTS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLORIDA FROM APRIL 12, 1862, TO JUNE 11, 1863. CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#16 GENERAL ORDERS, No. 12. HDQRS. DISTRICT OF EAST FLORIDA, Lake City, Fla., March 30, 1863.
The brigadier-general commanding has much pleasure in commending in the highest terms the conduct and services of the officers and men of the command near Jacksonville in the recent operations against the enemy. The duties imposed on them were severe, constant, and dangerous. They were performed by both officers and men with a cheerfulness and gallantry which would be creditable to any troops in the service. The command was composed of the companies of Capts. Winston Stephens and [W. E.] Chambers, of the Second [Florida] Cavalry (Lieutenant-Colonel [A. H.] McCormick commanding), assisted by Maj. R. Harrison, of that regiment; the companies of Captain [Edwin] West, of First Special Battalion; of Captain [S. F.] Rou's company, serving as infantry; Captains [John] Westcott, [S. W.] Mays, [P. B.] Bird, J. Q. Stewart, of First Partisan Rangers, and the independent infantry companies of Captains [Samuel E.] Hope, John Bryan, A. [A.] Stewart, O. F. Peek, C. Beggs, [A. P.] Mootey, and Lieutenant Tucker's company, from camp of instruction, commanded by Maj. T. W. Brevard; and the artillery companies of Captains [R. H.] Gamble, [Joseph L.] Dunham, and [Henry F.] Abell, with five companies of Fourth Georgia Cavalry, Colonel [D. L.] Clinch commanding, three of which served as infantry under the command of Major [J. C.] McDonald, of that regiment. Colonel Clinch, as commanding officer of forces, during his stay was active and efficient in the discharge of his duty, and, with Major McDonald and his officers and men, was eager and ready to meet the enemy on all occasions.
Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick, commanding cavalry, and Maj. R. Harrison, Second Florida Cavalry, with Captains Chambers and Stephens and their officers and men, performed constant and severe duty, watching and meeting the enemy night and day. Maj. T. W. Brevard, commanding infantry, with Captain West's company of First Special Battalion, and Captains Westcott, Mays, Bird, and J. Q. Stewart and their companies of First Battalion of Partisan Rangers; and independent infantry of Captains Hope, Bryan, A. [A.] Stewart, O. F. Peek, Beggs, and Mootey; Captain Rou's company of dismounted cavalry; Lieutenant Tucker's company from camp of instruction, and the companies of Fourth Georgia Cavalry, performed hard and important outpost and picket duty night and day, lying close to the enemy, and on several occasions driving them back when they were out in force, and while under cover of the fire from their gunboats and batteries.
Captain Hope with his company performed good service, and Captains Mootey, Peek, and Beggs, and their officers and men, although just mustered into service, did their duty bravely and well. Lieutenant Tucker, commanding company from camp of instruction, rendered efficient service and is entitled to favorable mention; as also are Lieut. Thomas Broome and Cadet Lewis M. Gamble. Major [R. B.] Thomas, chief of artillery, commanded the batteries with efficiency and performed good service.
The Florida Artillery, Capt. R. H. Gamble commanding, with Lieutenants [F. L.] Villepigue and [C. E.] Dyke, [Edward W.] Gamble, and [Joseph N.] Whitner; the Milton Artillery, Captain [J. L.] Dunham commanding, with Lieutenants [Simon K.] Bull, [Drury] Rambo, and the other officers and men; Abell's battery, Captain [H. F.] Abell commanding, with Lieutenant [Charles F.] Stevens and the other officers and men, deserve special commendation for their admirable discipline, drill, and efficient service.
The veteran regiment--First Georgia Regulars, Lieutenant-Colonel [William] Martin commanding, with Major Wayne--maintained during their short service with the command the high reputation they won elsewhere. Lieut. T. E. Buckman, chief of ordnance, rendered most valuable service during the operations, and is entitled to the highest praise for his bravery, his skill, and his indefatigable energy.
Private Francis Soule, of Captain West's company, First Special Battalion, commanding gun detachment, is justly entitled to distinguished commendation for the firmness with which, on several different occasions, he stood by his gun under the enemy's heavy and accurate fire, and for the admirable skill and efficiency with which he commanded his gun.
Private James Chesnut, of Captain Chambers' company, also deserves special notice for valuable services rendered day and night at an exposed and isolated point immediately under the enemy's guns. The brigadier-general commanding congratulates the troops on the result of their labors. With small loss to themselves they have inflicted considerable punishment on the enemy and rendered his occupation of the town fruitless. By order of Brigadier-General Finegan, commanding: W. CALL, Assistant Adjutant-General, O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XIV
MARCH 23-31, 1863.--Operations near Jacksonville, Fla. No. 2.--Report of Brig. Gen. Joseph Finegan, C. S. Army. HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF EAST FLORIDA, Lake City, Fla., March 31, 1863.
GENERAL: I have the honor to report that on the night of the 24th instant I directed Lieutenant [T. E.] Buckman, chief of ordnance, to proceed with the rifled 32-pounder furnished me by Brigadier-General [H.] Cobb, mounted on a platform car on the railroad, and a sufficient infantry support for the gun, to within range of the town, and open on it with shot and shell. In obedience to this order Lieutenant Buckman proceeded to within 1? miles of the town and opened on it with effect, throwing shell with great accuracy into those parts of the town where the enemy were located. The gun was admirably served, and great credit is due to Lieutenant Buckman and to Private Francis Soule, of Captain [Edwin] West's company, First Special Battalion Florida Volunteers, commanding gun detachment, for its effective service. The firing of the enemy from a large number of heavy guns on their gunboats and some in battery soon became concentrated and accurate, and the gun, in pursuance of orders, was withdrawn after inflicting some damage on the enemy and without loss on our side.
On the succeeding morning the enemy advanced in force, about 1,500 strong, in three columns, driving in pickets with skirmishers, and formed in line of battle about 3 miles from town. My entire force was immediately ordered with all possible expedition to proceed to the ground where they were drawn up and engage them. The rifled 32-pounder, under command of Lieutenant Buckman, with a strong support of infantry and cavalry on left flank, protected on the right by the main body of our troops, was sent down on the railroad, and opened on the enemy as soon as they came within range, gradually approaching them until within full view of a considerable force protected by a 12-pounder Parrott gun, and engaged in destroying a culvert over which it was necessary for our gun to pass in order to shell the town. Lieutenant Buckman opened on them with effect, throwing shell with great accuracy and dispersing the party.
In the mean time a section of Captain [R. H.] Gamble's battery of Florida artillery was ordered some little distance in advance of our main body, and under command of Captain Gamble and Lieutenant [F. L.] Villepigue opened on the enemy a cross-fire in the direction where they were supposed to be lying concealed in some force. The enemy had in this fight, in addition to the Parrott gun on the railroad car, a small hand piece, with which he opened in the direction of the firing from Captain Gamble's section. He did not await the advance of the main body of our troops, but retired precipitately soon after the 32-pounder gun had opened on him. I continued to throw shell into their column for some distance on their retreat, and found evidence of considerable loss on their part--a number of guns, caps, haversacks, canteens, and fragments of human bodies and portions of skulls were found on the several roads occupied by their columns. The conduct and services on this occasion of Lieut. T. E. Buckman, chief of ordnance, and of Private Francis Soule, of Captain West's company (First Special Battalion), commanding gun detachment of 32-pounder rifled gun, is again entitled to special commendation.
The enemy having retired, I sent forward a strong body of infantry, under command of Major [T. W.] Brevard, First Partisan Rangers, with orders to hold them in reserve under cover from the enemy's guns, and to send forward a body of skirmishers to approach cautiously and ascertain the position of the enemy in the immediate vicinity of the town and endeavor to draw them out in force. The order was executed by Major Brevard with promptness, gallantry, and discretion. The skirmishers, under command of Major Brevard in person, advanced to within a short distance of the town. Finding the enemy's pickets drawn into their outer battery (a strong position on the brow of a hill), a ravine in front, and a strong force well posted for its defense and under good cover on either flank, and having no further object to gain, I ordered Major Brevard's command to retire, and replacing and strengthening my pickets, returned with the main body of my force to camp, having inflicted on the enemy, as I have reason to believe, a probable loss of 10 or 15 men, without any casualties to my own troops.
The conduct and spirit of both officers and men of the entire command were excellent, and I desire to mention favorably to the commanding general Col. Duncan L. Clinch, Fourth Georgia Cavalry; Lieutenant-Colonel [A. H.] McCormick, Second Florida Cavalry; Major R. B.] Thomas, inspector-general and acting chief of artillery; Maj.[R. B.] Brevard, First Battalion Partisan Rangers; Major[Robert] Harrison, Second Florida Cavalry; Major [J. C.] McDonald, Fourth Georgia Cavalry; Captain [Edwin] West, First Special Battalion; Captains [John] Westcott, [Samuel W.] Mays, P. B. Bird, and J. Q. Stewart, of Brevard's battalion of Partisan Rangers, and Lieutenant Tucker, commanding company from camp of instruction, and his officers and men.
On the succeeding day (the 26th instant) I placed early in the morning a strong force of infantry, with a battery of artillery, under Major Brevard, First Battalion Partisan Rangers, under cover some woods to the right of where the enemy were posted on the 25th instant, with the design of getting in their rear should they again venture out. During the day information reached me that they were out in force, and I again marched to meet them, with the intention of cutting them off, but they retired before we got near them.
On the night of the 26th [instant] they were out in some force attempting to destroy the railroad track about 1 mile from town. Lieutenant Buckman was again ordered with the rifled 32-pounder and an infantry support to drive them in. This he accomplished with a few rounds. On each succeeding day I posted a large body of infantry under cover for the purpose of cutting off any force that might come out; but the enemy kept closely within their lines in the suburbs of the town and under the immediate fire of their gunboats and batteries.
On Sunday, the 29th instant, while reconnoitering the town from a position on the river, I discovered it was on fire in several places and that the transports were being loaded with troops. I immediately conjectured that the enemy were leaving, and pressed on into the town, arriving just after the departure of the last gunboat. I found the town in great part consumed, but succeeded in extinguishing the fire in some valuable buildings. There were evidences of precipitate departure by the enemy, and some quartermaster's stores were left by them, which were taken and turned over to the proper officers.
I regret to report that on the night of the 27th instant Lieutenant [O. F.] Braddock, of Captain [John] Westcott's company Partisan Rangers, who had obtained, through the solicitation of his officers, permission to proceed to the east bank of the Saint John's River to bring across the wives and children of men in the service who were there destitute and exposed to the outrages of the negro troops of the enemy, after having crossed the river, some 12 miles above my camp, and met the wagons sent by his captain to convey the women and children, was captured, with 15 men, 2 wagons, and 8 mules, by a three of the enemy under Col. Montgomery. The mules were recovered by a force which I sent in pursuit, but the wagons were burned by the enemy and the women and children carried off. I have ordered the arrest of this officer (who subsequently escaped from his captors), and will ask for his trial by court-martial whenever the proper witnesses can be produced. The fortifications erected by the enemy around Jacksonville were formidable. I desire to bring to the notice of the commanding general in the highest terms of praise the conduct and services of both officers and men of the command in the recent operations, and herewith transmit a copy of General Orders, No. 12, issued by me, to which I beg to refer the commanding general for special mention of instances of individual merit. I will, however, here mention as prominently entitled to consideration the services and conduct of Lieut. T. E. Buckman, chief of ordnance on my staff, a most accomplished, brave, ingenious, and energetic officer, and Privates Francis Soule, of Captain West's company, First Special Battalion, and James Chestnut, of Captain Chambers' company, Second Florida Cavalry; also Capts. W. E. Chambers and Winston Stephens of the Second Florida Cavalry, and their officers and men.
I have ascertained that the enemy's force in Jacksonville was as follows: Eighth Maine, 1,100 strong; Sixth Connecticut, 800 strong (whites); First South Carolina Volunteers (black troops), commanded by Col. T. W. Higginson, a full regiment, estimated from 900 to 1,500; Second South Carolina Volunteers (blacks), Colonel Montgomery commanding, not full. I have the honor to be, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant, JOS. FINEGAN, Brigadier-General, Commanding. Brig. Gen. THOMAS JORDAN, Chief of Staff, Charleston, S.C. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XIV
Correspondence, Orders, And Returns Relating To Operations On The Coasts Of South Carolina And Georgia, And In Middle And East Florida, From June 12 To December 31, 1863.CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#4 DISTRICT OF GEORGIA. Brig. Gen. H. W. MERCER.TALIAFERRO'S BRIGADE.
Col. GEORGE A. GORDON. CAVALRY, 4th Georgia, Col. D. L. Clinch, 5th Georgia, Col. R. H. Anderson, 20th Georgia Battalion, Maj. John M. Millen, 24th Georgia Battalion, Maj. E. C. Anderson, jr. Hardwick Mounted Rifles, Capt. J. L. McAllister. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXVIII/2
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS ON THE COASTS OF SOUTH CAROLINA AND GEORGIA, AND IN MIDDLE AND EAST FLORIDA, FROM JUNE 12 TO DECEMBER 31, 1863, CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#13 DISTRICT OF GEORGIA, Brig. Gen. H. W. MERCER.
2d Confederate Engineers, Company D, Capt. James W. McAlpine. 1st Florida Battalion, Lieut. Col. C. F. Hopkins. 1st Volunteers (Georgia), Col. C. H. Olmstead. 12th Georgia Battalion (one company). 22d Georgia Battalion (six companies). 29th Georgia (two companies). 30th Georgia (one company). 32d Georgia (one company). 54th Georgia (four companies), Lieut. Col. H. RawIs. 63d Georgia, Col. George A. Gordon. Georgia Battery, Capt. John M. Guerard. Jo. Thompson Artillery, Capt. C. R. Hanleiter. Kilcrease Artillery, Capt. F. L, Villepigue. Regular Light Battery, Capt. J. A. Maxwell. Terrell Artillery, Capt. J. W. Brooks. 4th Georgia Cavalry, Col. D. L. Clinch. 5th Georgia Cavalry, Col. R. H. Anderson. 20th Georgia Cavalry Battalion, Lieut. Col. J. M. Millen. 24th Georgia Cavalry Battalion, Maj. E. C. Anderson, jr. Hardwick Mounted Rifles (two companies), Capt. J. L. McAllister. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXVIII/2
JUNE 8, 1863.--Affair near Brunswick, Ga. Report of Capt. W. M. Hazzard, Fourth Georgia Cavalry. HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DISTRICT OF GEORGIA, Savannah, July 2, 1863. Brig. Gen. THOMAS JORDAN, Chief of Staff, Charleston, S.C
GENERAL: I have the honor to forward, for the information of the commanding general, a copy of a report received from Captain Hazzard, of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry. I desire particularly to direct the attention of the commanding general to the good conduct of Lieutenant Grant and detachment. Very respectfully, your obedient servant, H. W. MERCER, Brigadier-General, Commanding,.
[Enclosure.] Col. D. L. CLINCH, Commanding Fourth Georgia Cavalry, Waynesville. CAMP WALKER, June 29, 1863.
COLONEL: Yours of this day's date, notifying me that Brigadier-General Mercer desired a report of the affair at Brunswick on 8th of June, has been received. On the morning of the 8th couriers reached camp about 10 o'clock with information that two gunboats and one transport towing two large boats loaded with troops had started from Saint Simon's Island in the direction of Brunswick. Previous information justified the belief that a temporary landing in Brunswick would be attempted. I therefore hastened to that point with the remainder of my command and reached there about 10:30. Soon after leaving camp the heavy boom of cannon gave assurance that Sergeants J. W. Taylor and Alexander Burney, with the Brunswick pickets, had disputed a landing. The firing was incessant for about three quarters of an hour, when the boats withdrew. Upon their approach these two gallant young officers assembled their pickets upon the edge of the bluff near the old wharf, and in a lying position gave them many well-directed rounds at a distance of about 150 yards. This picket was aided by men from two other posts. Corporal A E Foreman, Corporal Lamb, and Corporal T E Hazzard, when they saw the boats leave Saint Simon's Island, hastened with all the men they could spare to their assistance.
Soon after arriving in Brunswick with the remainder of my command the boats ascended the river. Fearing for the safety of the salt-works, some 7 miles up the river, and thinking it might only be for the purpose of drawing us from Brunswick, I ordered Lieutenant Grant with the detachments of Sergeants Taylor and Burney and such other men as I could spare, numbering in all some 30, to select a good position and dispute every attempt at landing and not to fire until a good chance presented itself, while I hastened with the remainder of the command to the salt-works. Upon reaching the works I found one boat lying at the mouth of the creek leading to them, while the other was returning to Brunswick, and as soon as the return boat reached Brunswick they Opened a rapid fire. After firing some fifty shots the one threatening the salt works returned and joined the other at Brunswick. The firing became heavy.
I hastened back, but the jaded condition of my horses did not allow me to reach them before both boats had well-nigh exhausted their efforts at driving Lieutenant Grant from his position. I cannot speak in too high terms of the gallant conduct of the men subjected to this heavy cannonade, frequently at not more than 150 yards; their conduct is particularly commendable owing to the fact that their fire was reserved. I also take pleasure in calling attention to the forethought and gallantry displayed by Lieutenant Grant, Sergeants Taylor and Burney, and Corporals Foreman, Lamb, and Hazzard. Their promptness in assisting the Brunswick picket added much in deceiving the enemy in regard to our strength.
After this effort the largest boat, which was recognized as the blockader, returned to the sound, whilst the others again ascended the river. Thinking the salt-works and the railroad bridge the points of attack, I withdrew Lieutenant Grant's detachment and hastened them to the salt-works, while a squad, under the guidance of Mr. Julian Burnett, who had that day shouldered his gun and volunteered his services, hastened to the bridge. Upon nearing the bridge, which was out of rifle-range, Mr. Burnett perceived the vandals had fired it, and no sooner were our men discovered than they commenced a rapid retreat to their gunboat in a barge.
To get a shot at them Mr. Burnett conducted the squad to a point which the barge was forced to pass at a distance of about 100 yards, but which brought them within about 200 yards of the gunboat and transport, which by this time had taken position in rear of the gunboat. As the barge passed the squad poured a well-directed volley into it; 2 officers fell and 3 oarsmen appeared wounded. A second round made the remainder of the crew cease rowing until the boat had drifted out of range. The gunboat then opened fire, also their sooty allies on the transport. After many harmless rounds the boats returned to the salt-works at about sunset and came to.
Supposing their object was to make a night attack, I divided my command, placing detachments respectively under command of Lieutenants Scarlett, R. S. Pyles, and H. F. Grant, who carefully watched their movements until morning. No further efforts were made at a raid, and both boats returned to the sound. We lost one horse during the day from a grape-shot, but were blessed in losing no one; not even a wound was inflicted. A few days after, from the accidental bursting of a shell, we lost the heroic Sergeant Burney.
Information, apparently reliable, states the enemy lost 3 killed, 1 officer severely wounded, and others slightly. Very respectfully, W. M. HAZZARD, Captain Company G, Fourth Georgia Cavalry.
[Endorsement] JULY 6, 1863. Mention in orders the activity and foresight of Captain Hazzard and gallantry of Lieutenant Grant and command. G. T. B. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XIV
On June 8, 1863, two United States gunboats, and one transport towing two large boats loaded with troops, started from St. Simon's island in the direction of Brunswick. The landing was disputed by Sergts. J. W. Taylor and Alexander Burney, with the Brunswick pickets, and after incessant firing for about three-quarters of an hour the boats withdrew. When Corp. A. E. Foreman, Corporal Lamb and Corp. T. E. Hazzard saw the boats leave St. Simon's island, they had hastened with all the men they could spare and greatly aided Taylor and Burney in repelling the enemy. Capt. W. W. Hazzard, Company G, Fourth Georgia cavalry (Col. D. L. Clinch), seeing two boats ascend the river, and fearing for the safety of the salt works some seven miles up, ordered Lieutenant Grant, with detachments from Sergeants Taylor and Burney and such other men as he could spare, about 30 in all, to take a good position and dispute every attempt at landing, while he hastened with the remainder of his command to the salt works. He found one boat lying at the mouth of the creek leading to the works, and another going back to Brunswick. After firing about fifty shots, the one threatening the salt works returned and joined the other at Brunswick Upon the repulse of the Federals the largest boat returned to the sound, while the others again ascended the river. The detachment under Lieutenant Grant was now hurried to the salt works, while a squad under the guidance of Julian Burnett, who had that day shouldered his gun and volunteered his services, hastened to the railroad bridge. This had just been fired by a party of the enemy, who retreated to their barge on the approach of the Confederates. The latter being conducted by Mr. Burnett to a point which the barge was obliged to pass, poured a well-directed fire into it at a distance of about 100 yards. Two officers fell, and three oarsmen appeared wounded. As the gunboats returned to the neighborhood of the salt works, Captain Hazzardplaced detachments under Lieutenants Scarlett, R. S. Pyles and H. F. Grant to watch the movements of the enemy. The Federals, however, made no further efforts and both boats returned to the sound. The Confederates lost one horse from a grapeshot; but not a man was wounded. It was reported that the enemy lost three killed, one officer severely and others slightly wounded. A few days later, Sergeant Burney was killed by the accidental bursting of a shell. The activity and foresight of Captain Hazzard and the gallantry of Lieutenant Grant and command were mentioned in official orders.
Artillery Company Formed:
JUNE 17, 1863.---Capture of the Confederate States Steamer Atlanta (Fingal), in Warsaw Sound, Ga. No. 2.--Report of Brig. Gen. H. W. Mercer, C. S. Army, commanding Military District of Georgia. HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DISTRICT OF GEORGIA, Savannah, June 17, 1863.
GENERAL: I have the honor to report to the commanding general that the Confederate States steamer Atlanta (Fingal) surrendered to the Abolitionists at 7 a.m. this day. The Atlanta proceeded to Warsaw Sound to attack two monitors which arrived there several days since. Captain [J. S.] Kennard, C. S. Navy, who witnessed the meeting at a distance of 2 miles, reports that the Atlanta fired only four shots. She appeared to be aground at the time, and the enemy at once took possession. It is surmised that the crew mutinied and overpowered the officers. Colonel D. L. Clinch, commanding Fourth Georgia Cavalry, reports that the Abolitionists are landing a large force on Saint Simon's Island. He thinks that cavalry or artillery constitute a part of the force, and that a very serious incursion is intended. I shall use every effort to repel the invaders, but, as the general is aware, my force is much reduced and my means small. Very respectfully, your obedient servant, H. W. MERCER, Brigadier-General, Commanding. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXX/1
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING SPECIALLY TO THE OPERATIONS ON THE COASTS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLORIDA FROM APRIL 12, 1862, TO JUNE 11, 1863. CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#14 DISTRICT OF GEORGIA. Brig. Gen. H. W. MERCER commanding. UNATTACHED. Savannah River Batteries and other defenses.
1st Georgia Volunteers, Col. C. H. Olmstead. 54th Georgia, Col. Charlton H. Way.63d Georgia, Col. G. A. Gordon. 1st Battalion Georgia Sharpshooters (four companies), Capt. A. Shaaff. Battalion Savannah Volunteer Guard (three companies), Maj. John Screven. Emmett Rifles, Capt. George W. Anderson. 4th Georgia Cavalry, Col. D. L. Clinch. 5th Georgia Cavalry, Col. Robert H. Anderson. Battalion Georgia Cavalry (three companies), Maj. E. C. Anderson, jr. Battalion Georgia Partisan Rangers (three companies), Maj. John M. Millen. 22d Battalion Georgia Artillery (five companies), Col. E. C. Anderson. Chatham (Georgia) Light Artillery, Capt. Joseph S. Claghorn. Chestatee (Georgia) Light Artillery, Capt. Thomas H. Bomar. Columbus (Georgia) Light Artillery, Capt. Edward Croft. Joe Thompson (Georgia) Artillery, Capt. Cornelius R. Hauleiter. Martin's (Georgia) Light Artillery Capt. Robert Martin. Read's (Georgia) Light Artillery, First Lieut. J. A. Maxwell. Terrell (Georgia) Light Artillery, Capt. E.G. Dawson. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XIV
Correspondence, Orders, And Returns Relating To Operations On The Coasts Of South Carolina And Georgia, And In Middle And East Florida, From June 12 To December 31, 1863. CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#18 DISTRICT OF GEORGIA. Brig. Gen. H. W. MERCER.
2d Confederate Engineers, Company D, Capt. J, W. McAlpine. 1st Florida Battalion, Lieut. Col. C. F. Hopkins.1st (Volunteer) Georgia, Col. C. H. Olmstead. 22d Georgia Battalion, Lieut. Col. W. R. Pritchard. 29th Georgia, Company G. 30th Georgia, Company K. 54th Georgia (four companies), Maj. George L. Buist. 57th Georgia, Col. W. Barkuloo. 63d Georgia. Col. George A. Gordon. Jackson Guards, Capt. John Tanner. 4th Georgia Cavalry, Col. Duncan L. Clinch.20th Georgia Cavalry Battalion, Lieut. Col. J. M. Millen. 24th Georgia Cavalry Battalion, Maj. E. C. Anderson, jr. Hardwick Mounted Rifles, Capt. J. L. McAllister. Jo. Thompson (Georgia) Artillery, Capt. C. R. Hanleiter. Georgia Battery. Capt. N. B. Clinch. Georgia Battery, Capt. John M. Guerard. Regular (Georgia) Battery A, Capt. J. A. Maxwell. Regular (Georgia) Battery B, Capt. Charles Daniel. Terrell (Georgia) Artillery, Capt. John W. Brooks. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXVIII/2
CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING SPECIALLY TO THE OPERATIONS ON THE COASTS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLORIDA FROM APRIL 12, 1862, TO JUNE 11, 1863. CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.--#19 UNATTACHED. Savannah River Batteries and other defenses.
1st Georgia, Col. C. H. Olmstead. 2d Georgia (State), Col. R. L. Storey. 18th Georgia Volunteers (battalion), Maj. John Screven. Phoenix (Georgia) Volunteers, Col. G. A. Gordon. 4th Georgia Cavalry, Col. D. L. Clinch, 5th Georgia Cavalry, Col. Robert H. Anderson. Georgia Cavalry (battalion), Maj. E. C. Anderson, jr. Georgia Partisan Rangers (battalion), Maj. John M. Millen.12th Georgia Artillery (battalion), Lieut. Col. H. D. Capers. 22d Georgia Artillery (battalion), Col. E. C. Anderson. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XIV
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA, AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM JANUARY 1 TO FEBRUARY 29, 1864.--#2 HDQRS. DEPT. OF S. CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA, Charleston, S.C., January 23, 1864. Maj. C. J. HARRIS, Commandant of Conscripts. State of Georgia:
MAJOR: In answer to your communication asking for the "aggregate present and absent" of the commands from the State of Georgia in this department, I am directed by the commanding general to report as follows:
- Command. Strength Companies
- 5th Georgia Cavalry 980 10
- 18th Georgia Battalion Infantry
- (serving as heavy artillery) 289 10
- 6th Georgia Infantry 618 10
- 19th Georgia Infantry 591 10
- 23d Georgia Infantry 590 10
- 27th Georgia Infantry 605 10
- 28th Georgia Infantry 538 10
- 1st Georgia Infantry (regulars) 800 10
- 57th Georgia Infantry 636 10
- 63d Georgia Infantry 1,105 10
- 64th Georgia Infantry 746 10
- 22d Georgia Battalion (artillery) 445 5
- 54th Georgia Infantry 433 4
- 29th Georgia Infantry }192 (a)1
- 30th Georgia Infantry }
- 4th Georgia Cavalry 933 10
- 20th Georgia Battalion (cavalry) 480 6
- 24th Georgia Battalion (cavalry) 298 4
- Hardwick Mounted Rifles (cavalry) 174 2
- Maxwell's battery artillery 105 1
- Daniell's battery artillery 102 1
- Brooks' battery artillery 148 1
- Guerard's battery artillery 104 1
- Clinch's battery artillery 91 1
- Hanleiter's battery artillery 119 1
- 21st Georgia Battalion (cavalry) 396 5
- 32d Georgia Regiment (infantry) 1,036 10
- 54th Georgia Regiment (infantry) 517 6
- 12th Georgia Battalion (artillery) 513 6
- 22d Georgia Battalion (heavy artillery) 83 1
- 29th Georgia Volunteers 87 1
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA, AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM JANUARY 1 TO FEBRUARY 29, 1864.--# DISTRICT OF GEORGIA.Brig. Gen. HUGH W. MERCER.
1st Florida Battalion, Lieut. Col. Charles F. Hopkins. 1st Georgia (volunteers), Col. Charles H. Olmstead. 29th Georgia, Company G.30th Georgia, Company K. 54th Georgia, Company A.54th Georgia (three companies), }Jackson (Florida) Guards, } Maj. Alfred L. Hartridge.57th Georgia, Col. William Barkuloo. 63d Georgia, Col. George A. Gordon. 64th Georgia, Col. John W. Evans.4th Georgia Cavalry, Col. Duncan L. Clinch. 20th Georgia Cavalry Battalion, Lieut. Col. John M. Millen. 24th Georgia Cavalry Battalion, Maj. Edward C. Anderson, jr. Hardwick Mounted Rifles, Capt. J. L. McAllister. 12th Georgia Artillery Battalion, Company C.22d Georgia Artillery (five companies), } Lieutenant Col. William R. Pritchard. Cobb (Georgia) Guards. Brooks (Georgia) battery, Capt. John W. Brooks. Clinch's (Georgia)battery, Capt. N. B. Clinch. Guerard's(Georgia) battery, Capt. John M. Guerard. Regular (Georgia) Battery (B), Capt. Charles Daniell. Regular (Georgia) Battery (A), Capt. J. A. Maxwell. Jo. Thompson (Georgia) Artillery, Capt. Cornelius R. Hanleiter. Company of engineer troops, Capt. James W. McAlpine.O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1
FEBRUARY 5-22, 1864.--The Florida Expedition. No. 27.--Report of Col. Caraway Smith, commanding Cavalry Brigade, of engagement at Olustee. HDQRS. CAVALRY BRIGADE, DIST. OF EAST FLORIDA, February 24, 1864. . Capt. W. CALL, Assistant Adjutant-General.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report of the part taken by the Cavalry Brigade in the late engagement near Ocean Pond the 20th instant:
On the morning of the 20th, it being reported that the enemy were advancing from the direction of Sanderson, I received orders from the brigadier-general commanding to advance and meet them for the purpose of ascertaining their position and number. I accordingly moved out with all the cavalry force then available, which consisted of 250 men of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry (Colonel Clinch commanding) and of 202 men of the Second Florida Cavalry (Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick commanding). I discovered the enemy about 4 miles distant from our encampment, occupying in force the second crossing of the railroad from Olustee. I immediately reported the fact to you and directed Colonel Clinch to advance a body of skirmishers from his regiment to attack the enemy's pickets, which he did promptly, and was pushing the attack earnestly when they were met by a much larger force from the enemy, which compelled them to retire to their horses. This they did in good order.
The enemy then moved forward with his whole force, skirmishing on our rear, which we resisted with our rear guard, keeping him in check, while the cavalry retired in line and in perfect order. This skirmishing was kept up until we reached the first crossing of the railroad from Olustee. There I found our infantry and artillery under the command of Brigadier-General Colquitt, from whom I received orders to dispose the cavalry on the right and left wings of our army to prevent any flank movement of the enemy. I accordingly ordered Colonel Clinch to occupy the left with his regiment, and Lieutenant Colonel McCormick, with the Second Florida Cavalry, to take position on the right. Early in the action Colonel Clinch received a severe wound in the leg, which made it necessary for him to retire from the field, and the command of his regiment then devolved upon Captain Brown, who kept an efficient guard on the left flank while Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick protected the right.
On two occasions I discovered that the enemy was attempting to cross the railroad on the right of our infantry, evidently for the purpose of turning that wing, when I directed Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick to dismount a portion of his regiment and drive them back, which he did effectually. Thus by the vigilance of the cavalry on the right and left the enemy was prevented from deploying his large force so as to turn either flank. The Fifth Florida Cavalry Battalion (Maj. G. W. Scott commanding) was not brought upon the field until late in the evening, in consequence of the jaded condition of the men and horses from hard service for the twenty-four hours preceding. He, however, joined with Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick on the right about the middle of the contest and rendered him prompt assistance. The fight terminating at night, and our infantry lines not being perceptible to me through the woods, and the face of the country being cut up by swamps, making it very favorable for ambushing under the cover of night, I deemed it unadvisable to press forward with the whole cavalry force until further information could be had of the position of affairs. In addition to this, after the order to move forward was being executed another order was received to the effect that we were getting under the fire of our men, and also that I should beware of an ambush.
I attached the more importance to this order because it had already been discovered that a large body of the enemy's cavalry were resting on the opposite side of a swamp from us. The cavalry, however, as soon as possible followed up the enemy and gathered a number of prisoners, amounting to about 150. In addition to this several prisoners were taken by Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick and Major Scott while protecting the right flank. I have to report that Colonel Clinch and 3 men of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry were wounded. One of the wounded men is missing, and supposed now to be dead. It is due to the companies of Captains Stephens and Maxwell, of the second Florida Cavalry, to state that the conduct of the men and officers, while acting as the rear guard of the cavalry as we were falling back before the enemy, was highly satisfactory. They behaved with the coolness and deliberation of veterans. I have the honor to be, captain, your obedient servant, CARAWAY SMITH, Colonel, Commanding Cavalry Brigade O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1
Colonel Caraway Smith, commanding cavalry, gave the following account of the service of his troops: "On the morning of the 20th, it being reported that the enemy were advancing from the direction of Sanderson, I received orders from the brigadier-general commanding to advance and meet them for the purpose of ascertaining their position and number. I accordingly moved out with all the cavalry force then available, which consisted of 250 men, Fourth Georgia cavalry, Colonel Clinch commanding, and 202 men of the Second Florida cavalry, under Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick. I discovered the enemy about four miles distant from our encampment, occupying in force the second crossing of the railroad from Olustee. I reported the fact to you immediately and directed Colonel Clinch to advance a body of skirmishers from his regiment to attack the enemy's pickets, which he did promptly and was pushing the attack earnestly when they were met by a much larger force from the enemy, which compelled them to retire to their horses. This they did in good order. The enemy then moved forward with his whole force, skirmishing on our rear, which we resisted with our rear guard, keeping him in check, while the cavalry retired in line and in perfect order. This skirmishing was kept up until we reached the first crossing of the railroad from Olustee. There I found our infantry and artillery under the command of Brigadier-General Colquitt, from whom I received orders to dispose of the cavalry on the right and left wings of our army, to prevent any flank movement of the enemy. I accordingly ordered Colonel Clinch to occupy the left with his regiment and Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick with the Second Florida cavalry to take position on the right. Early in the action Colonel Clinch received a severe wound in the leg which made it necessary for him to retire from the field and the command of his regiment then devolved upon Captain Brown, who kept an efficient guard on the left flank while Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick protected the right. On two occasions I discovered that the enemy was attempting to cross the railroad on the right of our infantry, evidently for the purpose of turning that wing, when I directed Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick to dismount a portion of his regiment and drive him back, which he did effectually. Thus by the vigilance of the cavalry on the right and left, the enemy was prevented from deploying his large force so as to turn either flank. The Fifth Florida cavalry battalion, commanded by Maj. G. W. Scott, was not brought upon the field until late in the evening, in consequence of the jaded condition of the men and horses from hard service for the twenty hours preceding. He, however, joined Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick on the right, about the middle of the contest, and rendered him prompt assistance. The fight terminating at night and our infantry lines not being perceptible to me through the woods, and the face of the country being cut up by swamps, making it very favorable for ambushing under cover of night, I deemed it inadvisable to push forward with the whole cavalry force until further information could be had of the position of affairs. In addition to this, after the order to move forward was being executed, another order was received to the effect that we were getting under the fire of our men and also that I should beware of an ambush. I attached the more importance to this order because it had already been discovered that a large body of the enemy's cavalry were resting on the opposite side of a swamp from us. The cavalry, however, as soon as possible followed up the enemy and gathered a number of prisoners, amounting to about 150. In addition to this, several prisoners were taken by Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick and Major Scott while protecting the right flank.
"I have to report that Colonel Clinch and three men of the Fourth Georgia cavalry were wounded. One of the wounded men is missing and supposed to be dead. It is due to the companies of Captains Stephens and Maxwell, of the Second Florida cavalry, to state that the conduct of the men and officers while acting as the rear guard of the cavalry, as we were falling back before the enemy, was highly satisfactory. They behaved with the coolness and deliberation of veterans."
FEBRUARY 5-22, 1864.--The Florida Expedition. No. 17.--Reports of Brig. Gen. Joseph Finegan, C. S. Army, commanding District of East Florida. HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF EAST FLORIDA, In the Field, 12 miles from Jacksonville, February 26, 1864.
GENERAL: For the information of the commanding general I have the honor to report that on the evening of February 7 the enemy landed at Jacksonville, from eighteen transports and gun-boats, a large force of cavalry, artillery, and infantry, which was largely augmented by arrivals on the 8th instant. On the receipt of this intelligence I immediately notified Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick, commanding an effective force of near 350 men, of all arms, at Camp Finegan, to guard against a surprise, advising him that I would join the command as soon as I had issued the necessary orders for collecting my widely scattered troops and dispatched telegrams and letters for reinforcements.
On the night of the 8th instant, the enemy advanced from Jacksonville with great rapidity in three heavy columns, cavalry in the advance, artillery and infantry following, under command of Brigadier-General Seymour. They approached Camp Finegan as the command there were in the act of retiring. Their largely superior numbers deterred Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick, commanding, from attacking them, and in the darkness of the night he withdrew his command with caution and address and joined me at Camp Beauregard, near Ocean Pond, on the Olustee, on the 13th instant. The enemy with celerity pressed on to Baldwin, capturing on their way 5 guns of Companies A and B, Milton Light Artillery, which had been ordered to Baldwin. Reached Baldwin at daylight on the 9th instant. Remaining a short time, they continued on to Barber's the same night. At this point they were met on the 10th instant by two companies of cavalry under Maj. Robert Harrison, Second Florida Cavalry, whom I had ordered to join me, and who, with much gallantry, checked their progress for several hours at the Saint Mary's Crossing, with but small loss to us and a considerable loss to the enemy.
On the 9th instant, I removed all the Government stores from Sanderson, except 1,500 bushels corn, which was burned under my orders. On the 10th, the enemy reached Sanderson.
On the 11th instant, they were within 3 miles of Lake City. Here I had hastily collected, principally from the District of Middle Florida, a small force of 490 infantry, 110 cavalry, and two pieces of artillery. On the night of the 10th, I placed this force in a favorable position, 2? miles from Lake City, in the direction of the enemy. At 9.30 the enemy advanced upon us with a force estimated to be 1,400 mounted infantry and five pieces of artillery. Here they opened upon us, fighting as infantry, and skirmished heavily with my advance line. Discovering my position and its strength, and probably presuming my force larger than it was, they retreated to Sanderson, thence to Barber's, on the east bank of the Saint Mary's, where they constructed field-works and concentrated their whole force for a final movement on Lake City. In the mean time I used every possible effort to gather reinforcements, and on the 13th, moved to Ocean Pond, on Olustee, 13 miles from Lake City, and occupied the only strong position between Lake City and Barber's. Here I had field-works thrown up, and for several days, with a force less than 2,000 strong, awaited the enemy's advance.
In this time my command was increased by the arrival of reinforcements, and I organized the command as follows: The Sixth, Nineteenth, Twenty-third, Twenty-seventh, and Twenty-eighth Georgia Regiments Infantry and Sixth Florida Battalion Infantry, as the First Brigade, under the command of Brigadier-General Colquitt, with the Chatham Artillery (four guns) attached. The Thirty-second Georgia Volunteers, First Georgia Regulars, Sixty-fourth Georgia Volunteers, First Florida Battalion, and Bonaud's battalion, as the Second Brigade, under command of Col. George P. Harrison, Thirty-second Georgia Volunteers, with Guerard's light battery attached, the Florida Light Artillery being held in reserve. I assigned Col. R. B. Thomas, C. S. Army, to duty as chief of artillery, and organized the cavalry into a brigade, under the command of Col. Caraway Smith, Second Florida Cavalry, my whole effective force being as follows: Infantry, 4,600; cavalry, less than 600; artillery, 3 batteries--twelve guns.
On the 20th instant, the enemy advanced in three columns, since ascertained to have been twelve regiments of infantry (nine of white troops and three of black), estimated at 8,000, and some artillery (number of guns unknown), and 1,400 cavalry. At 12 m., the enemy were within 3 miles of my position. I ordered the cavalry, under Col. C. Smith, Second Florida Cavalry, supported by the Sixty-fourth Georgia, Colonel Evans commanding, and two companies of the Thirty-second Georgia, to advance and skirmish with the enemy and draw them to our works. The remaining force was placed under arms and prepared for action. Apprehending that the enemy was too cautious to approach our works, I ordered Brigadier-General Colquitt, commanding First Brigade, to advance with three of his regiments and a section of Gamble's artillery, and assume command of the entire force then ordered to the front and feel the enemy by skirmishing, and if he was not in too heavy force to press him heavily. I had previously instructed Colonel Smith, commanding cavalry, to fall back as our infantry advanced and protect their flanks. This movement was predicated on the information that the enemy had only three regiments of infantry, with some cavalry and artillery. Perceiving that in this movement the force under Brigadier-General Colquitt's command might become too heavily engaged to withdraw without a large supporting force, and intending that if the enemy should prove to be in not too great strength to engage them, I ordered in quick succession, within the space of an hour, the whole command to advance to the front as a supporting force, and myself went upon the field. These reinforcement's were pushed rapidly forward, and, as I anticipated, reached the field at the moment when the line was most heavily pressed, and at a time when their presence gave confidence to our men and discouragement to the enemy. I directed Lieutenant-Colonel Hopkins, commanding First Florida Battalion, and Major Bonaud, commanding Bonaud's battalion, to fall into line on the left in the direction of the enemy's heaviest firing. After I had ordered these reinforcements, and they were some distance on the way to the front, and while I was myself on the way to the front, I received from Brigadier-General Colquitt, commanding in the front, a request for the reinforcements which had already been ordered. The engagement became general very soon after its commencement. The enemy were found in heavy force, their infantry drawn up in three supporting lines, their artillery in position, cavalry on their flanks and rear. I ordered Brigadier-General Colquitt to press them with vigor, which he did with much judgment and gallantry. They contested the ground stubbornly, and the battle lasted for four and a half hours. At the end of this time, the enemy's lines having been broken and reformed several times, and two fine Napoleon and three 10-pounder Parrott guns and one set of colors captured from them, they gave way entirely, and were closely pressed for 3 miles until night-fall. I directed Brigadier-General Colquitt to continue the pursuit, intending to occupy Sanderson that night; but in deference to his suggestion of the fatigue of the troops, the absence of rations, and the disadvantages of the pursuit in the dark, and in consequence of a report from an advanced cavalry picket that the enemy had halted for the night and taken a position (which was subsequently ascertained to be incorrect), I withdrew the order. During the continuance of the battle, also after the enemy had given way, I sent repeated orders to Colonel Smith, commanding cavalry, to press the enemy on his flanks and to continue in the pursuit. But through some misapprehension these orders failed to be executed by him, and only two small companies on the left, and these but for a short distance, followed the enemy. The enemy retreated that night, hastily and in some confusion, to Sanderson, leaving a large number of their killed and wounded in our possession on the field. Their loss in killed, both officers and men, was large. Four hundred and eighteen of their wounded were removed by us from the field, and 400, or near that number, of their killed were buried by us; also nearly 200 prisoners were captured; several officers of high rank were killed and others severely wounded. Their loss cannot be less than 2,000 or 2,500 men, 5 superior guns, I set of colors captured, and 1,600 stand of arms; also 130,000 rounds cartridges (damaged by having been thrown into water), as appears by the report of the ordnance officer, herewith enclosed. The victory was complete and the enemy retired in rapid retreat, evacuating in quick succession Barber's and Baldwin, and falling back on Jacksonville. The enemy's forces were under command of Brig. Gen. T. Seymour, who was present on the field.
The conduct of Brigadier-General Colquitt entitles him to high commendation. He exhibited ability in the formation of his line and gallantry in his advance on the enemy. I have also to speak most favorably of Col. George P. Harrison, commanding Second Brigade, who exhibited in the engagement all the qualities of a capable and efficient officer. Col. R. B. Thomas, as chief of artillery, likewise rendered efficient service on the field. Colonel Evans, commanding Sixty-fourth Georgia Volunteers, and Col. Duncan L. Clinch, commanding Fourth Georgia Cavalry, were wounded while bravely performing their duty. Lieutenant-Colonel Barrow, Sixty-fourth Georgia Volunteers, and Captain Cannon, commanding, and Lieutenant Dancy, of the First Georgia Regulars; also Lieutenant Holland, commanding detachment from conscript camp, all officers of high promise, were killed. Among the killed and wounded were many other officers and men who had distinguished themselves on other fields, for a detailed statement of whom, and for instances of individual merit, I refer to the reports of the brigade commanders. Our loss in the engagement was 93 killed and 841 wounded, a large proportion very slightly. In the opening of the engagement the cavalry, under command of Colonel Smith, skirmished with the enemy with spirit and retired to the flanks in obedience to their orders. On the 22d instant, having repaired the railroad so as to secure my supplies, I advanced the command to Sanderson, pushing the cavalry rapidly in the direction of the enemy, and from Sanderson to Barber's, and thence to Baldwin and to this place, 12 miles from Jacksonville, where my further progress was arrested by orders from Brigadier-General Gardner, who had been directed to assume command, by whom I was here for the first time officially notified that the command had been transferred. My efforts and those of my officers for the organization and concentration of a force adequate to meet the enemy's superior numbers, and to check them in their rapid advance, were incessant and arduous. I have the gratification of reporting to the commanding general that while I continued in command they were successful. I transfer the army to my successor well supplied with forage and subsistence, well organized and armed, and deficient only in ordnance stores, for which timely requisitions were made, and which are now on their way. Respectfully submitted. JOSEPH FINEGAN, Brigadier-General, Commanding. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#6 DISTRICT OF GEORGIA. Brig. Gen. HUGH W. MERCER.
1st [volunteers] Georgia (five companies), Col. Charles H. Olmstead. 57th Georgia (eight companies), Col. William Barkuloo. 63d Georgia, Col. George A. Gordon. 1st Georgia (two companies),}22d Georgia (one battalion),} Lieut. Col. William R. Pritchard. Cobb (Georgia) Guards (two companies), }22d Georgia (one company), 29th Georgia (one company), Maj. Alfred L. Hartridge.1st Georgia (two companies),}22d Georgia (three companies), } Col. Edward C. Anderson. Mercer (Georgia) Artillery, }1st Georgia, Company C, ] Maj. James W. Anderson.22d Georgia, Company F, ] 4th Georgia Cavalry, Col. Duncan L. Clinch. 3d South Carolina Cavalry (three companies), Capt. Archibald L. Campbell. Maxwell's battery (A), Georgia Artillery, Capt. J. A. Maxwell. Barnwell's (Georgia)battery, Capt. A. Smith Barnwell. Brooks' (Georgia) battery, Capt. John W. Brooks. Clinch's (Georgia) battery, Capt. N. B. Clinch. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#6 DISTRICT OF GEORGIA.
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
- Company D, Georgia Regulars, Captain Guerard: Two Napoleons, two 12-pounder howitzers.
- Georgia Battery, Captain Clinch: Two 6-pounder bronze, two 12-pounder howitzers.
- Georgia Battery, Captain Daniell: Two Napoleons, two 12-pounder howitzers.
- Georgia Battery, Captain Maxwell: Four Napoleons.
- Terrell Artillery, Captain Brooks: Four Napoleons.
- Chatham Artillery, Capt. John F. Wheaton: Four Napoleons. Georgia
- Battery, Captain Barnwell: Four 6-pounder bronze.
General Beauregard issued special orders for disposition of forces 5 March 1864, transferring the Twenty-sixth Virginia regiment from Finegan's brigade to that commanded by Col. George P. Harrison, Jr.; the Fifty-ninth Virginia regiment from Harrison's brigade to Finegan's; the First Georgia regulars from Finegan's brigade to Colquitt's; and Capt. J. J. Dickison was ordered to proceed at once with his company to Palatka and resume his post there, and the commanding officer of the Fourth Georgia cavalry was directed to hold himself in readiness to support him with his whole command if necessary.
An aggressive movement being determined upon, General Finegan was directed to proceed by rail from Baldwin to Waldo with about 2,500 infantry and six pieces of artillery; thence by nearest route to Palatka, which place he was to attack and carry, after which he was to be governed by circumstances and await further orders. Between Waldo and Palatka he was to be joined by Colonel Martin, Sixth Florida battalion, with about 450 infantry, and Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, Fourth Georgia cavalry, with the same number of cavalry. On account of the condition of transportation by rail from Baldwin to Waldo, he was provokingly detained, consuming more hours than miles traveled, so that when he was to have begun the assault at Palatka he had not been able to move his command from Waldo, 38 miles distant. The scouts on the river bringing in information that a large reinforcement of infantry and cavalry had arrived at Jacksonville, it was deemed prudent to recall General Finegan and hold all their available force to meet any attempt on the part of the enemy.
On April 13th Lieutenant-Colonel McCormick was ordered to scout the country on his left and front, round Broward's neck and Yellow bluff, with the view of discovering if the enemy was making any movement from that quarter; and Col. R. H. Anderson, commanding the cavalry force in front, was directed to send Captain Dickison's company immediately to Palatka and take position as formerly and report to Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, Fourth Georgia cavalry, at Waldo. Under this special order and information that the enemy had passed up the river toward Palatka, Company H, Second Florida cavalry, 145 strong, was sent with all haste to that point. On their arrival they ascertained that the enemy had landed with 5,000 men. Captain Dickison reported to Colonel Harris asking for reinforcements, and the latter moved his command, about 125 effective men, to Sweetwater branch, 12 miles from Palatka. Scouts were sent out and reported that the enemy occupied the town. A detachment of the Fourth Georgia cavalry was ordered to support Captain Dickison in driving in the pickets and ascertaining their position and strength, which was soon accomplished, and three pickets with their horses captured. Simple as was this capture, the event was marked by a daring that gave luster to the heroic deed.
The enemy were strongly fortified and remained in Palatka nearly six weeks. During this occupation of the town our cavalry frequently skirmished with them, and with untiring vigilance awaited results. A detachment of 16 men under Captain Dickison, on one occasion was met by a superior force of the enemy, and after a hot skirmish which lasted forty minutes, holding their position without giving an inch, the enemy was reinforced and our men fell back in good order without loss. The enemy's loss was 5 killed and 8 wounded. A few days after we drove in their pickets and took position on the hill overlooking the town. Lieutenant McEaddy was sent to ascertain the true position of the enemy's pickets, and a secret night expedition was planned to capture the post, which proved successful, the entire guard of 8 men being captured.
Subsequently Colonel Tabb, now in command at Waldo, ordered Captain Dickison to make a reconnaissance. This was done and the enemy opened fire on our advance guard. The firing soon became general; the enemy sent forward two regiments, one white and one colored, which were held in check for about four hours. Night coming on, the enemy withdrew, with a loss of 11 killed and 22 captured. Our troops then retired in good order without any loss, though the enemy outnumbered them eight to one. On April 22d, in conveying notice of his relief by Col. J. M. Martin, Sixth Florida battalion, Colonel Tabb expressed to Captain Dickison " the high appreciation in which you and your command are held. The faithfulness, promptness and superior judgment which you have at all times manifested, give assurance of those soldierly qualities which inspire confidence and command respect and admiration everywhere."
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#1 SPECIAL ORDERS No. --. HDQRS. DEPT. S.C., GA., AND FLA., In the field, McGirt's Creek, Fla., March 5, 1864.
IV. Capt. J. J. Dickison, of the Second Florida Cavalry, will proceed at once with his company to Palatka, Fla., and take post there as heretofore. He will call upon the commanding officer of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry for such support as may be necessary.
V. The commanding officer of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry will furnish Capt. J. J. Dickison with such assistance as he may require for the post of Palatka, and hold himself in readiness to support Captain Dickison with his whole command if found necessary. By command of General Beauregard: HENRY BRYAN, Major and Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
FEBRUARY 5-22, 1864.--The Florida Expedition. No. 27.--Report of Col. Caraway Smith, commanding Cavalry Brigade, of engagement at Olustee. HDQRS. CAVALRY BRIGADE, DIST. OF EAST FLORIDA, February 24, 1864. ADDENDA. HDQRS. DEPT. OF S. CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA, Camp Milton, Fla., March 7, 1864. Maj. JOHN F. LAY, Inspector of Cavalry, &c.:
MAJOR: I am instructed by the general commanding to inform you that the report of Col. Caraway Smith of the operations of the Cavalry Brigade during the engagement at Ocean Pond and pursuit the same evening is not satisfactory, and to direct you to make inquiries in regard to the same, and report if the orders of superior officers were carried out by Colonel Smith, and if his command took such share in the attack on the enemy as could reasonably be expected under those orders.
I am instructed to communicate to you, for your attention, the following extracts from official reports:
First. From Brigadier-General Finegan's, in regard to the opening of the engagement: I ordered Brigadier-General Colquitt to advance with three of his regiments and assume command of the entire force then ordered to the front. During the continuance of the battle, also after the enemy had given way, I sent repeated orders to Colonel Smith, commanding cavalry, to press the enemy on his flanks and to continue in the pursuit; but through some misapprehension these orders failed to be executed by him, and only two small companies on the left, and these but for a short distance, followed the enemy.
Second. From Brigadier-General Colquitt's report, which, having given an account of the fight, states: We continued the pursuit for several miles, when night put an end to the conflict. Instructions were given to the cavalry to follow close upon the enemy and seize every opportunity to strike a favorable blow.
Third. Col. Caraway Smith's report, which, after summing up the fight (and which does not show that the cavalry made any positive attack after the fight began), states: Thus by the vigilance of the cavalry on the right and left the enemy was prevented from deploying his large force so as to turn either flank. The Fifth Florida Cavalry Battalion was not brought upon the field until late in the evening, in consequence of the jaded condition of the men and horses.
The fighting terminating at night, and our infantry lines not being perceptible to me through the woods, and the face of the country being cut up by swamps, making it very favorable for ambushing under cover of night, I deemed it unadvisable to press forward with the whole cavalry until further information could be had of the position of affairs. In addition to this, after the order to move forward was being executed another order was received to the effect that we were getting under the fire of our men, and also that I should beware of an ambush. I attached the more importance to this order because it had already been discovered that a large body of the enemy's cavalry were resting on the opposite side of a swamp from us. The commanding general also directs that you will inquire who gave Colonel Smith the order that he was getting under the fire of our own men and to beware of an ambush; also, how it was that our infantry lines were not perceptible to Colonel Smith at the termination of the fight, although a large body of the enemy's cavalry were discovered resting on the opposite side of a swamp. It is a matter of some surprise to the commanding general, which you will endeavor to explain, that the 202 men of the Second Florida Cavalry should have escaped without a casualty, none being mentioned in the report; also, that out of the whole cavalry only I officer and 3 privates were wounded. I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant, HENRY BRYAN, Major and Assistant Adjutant-General.
P. S.--The commanding general desires that you will also investigate the following extract from General Finegan's report: And in consequence of a report from our advance cavalry picket that the enemy had halted for the night and taken a position (which was subsequently ascertained to be incorrect), I withdrew the order. Very respectfully, &c., HENRY BRYAN, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#1 SPECIAL ORDERS No. 2.HDQRS. MILITARY DISTRICT OF FLORIDA, Camp Milton, March 8, 1864.
V. Col. R. H. Anderson, commanding cavalry force in the front, will cause Capt. J. J. Dickison's company (H), Second Cavalry, to move immediately to Palatka, on the Saint John's River, and take position as formerly. Further instructions will be sent him hereafter. He will report to Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, Fourth Georgia Cavalry, at Waldo, and call upon him for any support needed. By command of Major-General Anderson: WM. G. BARTH, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#1 HEADQUARTERS CAVALRY. ARMY OF FLORIDA, March 8, 1864. Capt. W. CALL, A. A. A. G., Mil. Dist. of Florida, Camp Milton:
CAPTAIN: I have the honor very respectfully to acknowledge the receipt of the order requiring Captain Dickison to move with his troops to Palatka, and to make the following statement to the major-general commanding:
Captain Dickison's troop was attached to Major Scott's battalion for special service, and is now doing important outpost duty. If my command is weakened I must respectfully request to be relieved from all responsibility in the event of any surprise or disaster. I have now only 948 privates for duty to cover a line 9 miles in length from Hogan's Landing to Trout Creek, and the men and horses are now being worked to the utmost. My line is now thinner than I would like to have it, and I would suggest that, if possible, a troop from the Fourth Georgia Cavalry, now at Starke, be ordered to Palatka in lieu of Dickison's troop. The necessary guides could be furnished from Dickison's troop.
One of my scouts, Massey, returned this afternoon from Saddler's Point. He reports the gun-boat that went up the river yesterday morning returned in the afternoon with about the same number of men visible on deck as when she went up. He heard from a woman (the mother of one of his scouts) whom he considers very reliable, who is living in Jacksonville, and who came out to see him yesterday, that the enemy received reinforcements on Sunday (day before yesterday) to the amount of two or three brigades. The enemy are now repairing the saw-mills and wharves and the buildings in town, and have opened a good many stores. Mrs. Seymour and several of the officers' wives have arrived. She also says that the enemy have masked batteries in front of Three-Mile Branch, in front of which they have stretched wire for the purpose of tripping cavalry; also that a large vessel loaded with supplies was wrecked coming over the bar some three or four days ago. She says the enemy say that the expedition was not ordered by Gillmore, but by Congress and the Secretary of War, and that they are daily expecting Rosecrans, when another attack or advance will be made. I am, captain, very respectfully, your obedient servant, R. H. ANDERSON, Colonel, Commanding.
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#2 HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DISTRICT OF FLORIDA, Camp Milton, March 13, 1864. Lieutenant-Colonel HARRIS, Commanding Fourth Georgia. Cavalry, Waldo:
Send following dispatch to Major Hamilton, quartermaster at Gainesville, by express: Order train down towards Cedar Keys to bring back by rail Captain McNeill's company to point nearest Orange Springs, with the following order to the officer in command: "Make forced march for protection of Orange Springs from enemy's boat expedition up the Ocklawaha." Captain Pearson and others will cooperate. By command of Maj. Gen. P. Anderson: WM. G. BARTH, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
Camp Milton, March 13, 1864. Lieutenant-Colonel HARRIS, Commanding Georgia Cavalry, Waldo, Fla.:
COLONEL: I am directed by the major-general commanding to state for your information and guidance that in case of a general advance of the enemy upon our front it is very desirable to have the co-operation of your entire cavalry force. To accomplish this it will be necessary for you, upon the receipt of such information in reliable shape, to fall back in the direction of Baldwin, either by the Middleburg and Baldwin road or such other road as may accomplish the march in the shortest time. Your forces will be expected to operate and unite with the cavalry force on our right wing, under Col. R. H. Anderson. It will be desirable that you shall not wait to concentrate your forces before moving, but will order those forces nearest to Middleburg and Baldwin to move independently and report as soon as practicable at the point named, and with the remainder of the command more distant you will follow. That you may more readily comprehend the movement, it is explained to you that the cavalry forces intended to operate upon the right flank of the army, and with which you will unite your forces, under Col. R. H. Anderson, commanding cavalry, will retire, in case of the necessity referred to, from their present position by the Black Creek road to its crossing of McGirt's Creek, which it will defend, and if compelled to retire, then by sending one company down the Black Creek road, toward its crossing of Black Creek, to watch any movement of the enemy in that direction. He will continue to retire by a road leading from that road to the New River road, and then along its course upon the right flank of the army in the direction of Baldwin. The intersection of the Middleburg and Baldwin road with the New River road, below Low's house, near the Yellow Water, is the point at which you had best aim, and from which you can readily unite with Colonel Anderson. Very respectfully, your obedient servant, JNO. F. LAY, Major and Assistant Inspector-General.
HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DISTRICT OF FLORIDA,Camp Milton, March 13, 1864. Lieutenant-Colonel HARRIS, Commanding Fourth Georgia Cavalry, Waldo:
COLONEL: Send by express to Major Hamilton, quartermaster at Gainesville, the following order for Captain Pearson, now en route from Gainesville to Tampa Bay, to be sent forward in haste:
Repair at once, by shortest route, to Orange Springs for protection of that point. Enemy supposed to be advancing up the Ocklawaha River in barges from Welaka. Other troops are ordered to cooperate with you. Communicate with and order any troops accessible to follow after and cooperate with you.By command of Maj. Gen. P. Anderson: WM. G. BARTH, Assistant Adjutant-General.
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF FLORIDA Camp Milton, March 14, 1864. Lieutenant-Colonel HARRIS, Commanding Cavalry, Waldo
Make an immediate and careful reconnaissance of the enemy's position at Palatka with a view to ascertain if he is still in force there and report the result by telegraph. WM. G. BARTH, Assistant Adjutant-General.
HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DISTRICT OF FLORIDA,Camp Milton, March 15, 1864. Lieutenant-Colonel HARRIS,Commanding, Waldo, Fla.:
COLONEL: Your communications of this date are received and have been submitted to the major-general commanding. Your course relative to the expected raid up the Ocklawaha is approved. In the event of Colonel Anderson's falling back from his present position, you are expected to join him with all the cavalry under your command, including Captain Dickison's company. The general declines acceding to your proposition relative to sending your dismounted men to get horses, but will consider special applications in these cases. In forwarding such applications you will indorse your opinion as to the probability of the man's procuring a horse if the furlough is granted. I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,WM. G. BARTH, Assistant Adjutant-General.
DEPARTMENT HEADQUARTERS, Camp Milton, Fla., March 17, 1864. Maj. HENRY BRYAN, Assistant Adjutant-General :
MAJOR: From reports of scouts and examination of deserters, the following facts with reference to the movements of the troops of the enemy in the direction of Palatka would seem to embody the truth: That on Wednesday, the 9th of March, 1864, an expedition left Jacksonville for Palatka, consisting of two gun-boats and three transport steamers, having aboard about 1,400 men, constituting three regiments of infantry (white) and five negro companies, with seven pieces of field artillery, with horses, &;c., but no cavalry, the whole force under the command of Colonel Barton. These troops reached Palatka on Wednesday night or Thursday morning, and on Friday commenced work on entrenchments and rifle-pits. One of the gun-boats left, whether up or down is not positively known. Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, on Sunday, March l3, reported a movement in the direction of Orange Springs, or Silver Springs, to meet which prompt measures were taken. This report has as yet not been verified, nor have we any news from the expedition. Respectfully,JNO. F. LAY, Major and Assistant Inspector-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#2 SPECIAL ORDERS No. 12.HDQRS. MILITARY DISTRICT OF FLORIDA, Camp Milton, March 19, 1864.
I. Colonel Tabb, Fifty-ninth Virginia Regiment, will proceed to Waldo without delay and assume command of all the troops, either infantry, cavalry, or artillery, now reporting to Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, Fourth Georgia Cavalry, at or near that place. Colonel Tabb will operate vigorously against the enemy in that section. He will obstruct the navigation of the tributaries of the Saint John's by felling timber, &c., and will use every means at his disposal to protect the region of country in which he operates from the incursions of the enemy. Colonel Tabb will communicate direct with these headquarters, and will promptly notify the major-general commanding of all movements of his own troops or those of the enemy. Before leaving Baldwin he will turn over the command of his regiment to his second in command. By command of Major-General Anderson: WM. G. BARTH, Assistant Adjutant-General.
HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DISTRICT OF FLORIDA, Camp Milton, March 22, 1864. Co. W. B. TABS, Commanding, Waldo:
COLONEL: Your note of the 20th instant, making inquiry as to movements of Lieutenant-Colonel Harris' cavalry command in the event of the enemy advancing from Jacksonville, has been submitted to the major-general commanding, who directs me to say that should such a contingency arise the original order will be strictly carried out. I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant, WM. G. BARTH, Assistant Adjutant-General O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#5HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DISTRICT OF FLORIDA, Camp Milton, April 15, 1864.Colonel TABB, Commanding, &c., Waldo:
COLONEL: The movements of the enemy at Jacksonville indicate a purpose on his part to make a raid upon some of our communications or depots of supply. It is believed that his designs are upon the Florida Railroad and the depots in Marion, Sumter, and Alachua Counties, which he supposes to contain a considerable amount of stores. It will be your province to defeat him in this object in every manner possible with the means at your control.
For this purpose, in addition to the regiment and battalion of infantry and the section of artillery with the Fourth Georgia Cavalry, now with you, the major-general commanding has ordered to you another section of Gamble's artillery, 250 cavalry, and two battalions of infantry. The artillery and cavalry are now en route for your headquarters, and the infantry will be sent by rail to Waldo, as soon as the transportation for that purpose can be obtained. With this force it is believed you cannot only foil the enemy in his purposes, but by activity, energy, and skill, can punish him severely for his temerity, if not capture or destroy the most of his party. His plans and purposes not having been fully developed it is not deemed advisable to give you specific instructions as to your movements and disposition of forces.
It is supposed that you will keep yourself fully advised of the enemy's movements in your front and on your flanks. To do this your vedettes, pickets, and scouts must be vigilant and active. Your good judgment will enable you to act intelligently upon information thus obtained, keeping constantly in view the main object, viz, to defeat the raid and punish as severely as possible its projectors. It is possible that the force at Palatka may move out in your front with a view of holding your forces in position, while the raiders do their work on your flanks and rear. Should this opportunity present itself, and you feel yourself able to accomplish it by a vigorous attack of this main force with all your strength, you may defeat it completely and then the raiders will be at your mercy.
The raiding party which left Jacksonville is believed to consist of about 400 or 500 mounted infantry, under Col. Guy V. Henry; he perhaps has a light battery also with him. Some of the men are provided with picks, crowbars, &c., for the purpose of destroying the railroad. The major-general commanding has entire confidence in your skill, energy, and courage in this important work entrusted to you, and believes that your success will be equal to his hopes. I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant, WM. G. BARTH, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#5 HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF SOUTH CAROLINA, &C., April 16, 1864. Maj. Gen. PATTON ANDERSON, Commanding District of Florida:
GENERAL: I am instructed by the commanding general to inform you that he has this evening ordered by telegraph the following commands from your district to be sent here at once, viz: Colquitt's brigade, Thirty-second Georgia Regiment, Wheaton's battery, and Guerard's battery. He has also ordered that portion of Clinch's (Fourth Georgia) cavalry now in your district to report to Major-General Gilmer, at Savannah, for duty. He further advises that he has directed Anderson's (Fifth Georgia) cavalry and Villepigue's battery to be sent to report to Brigadier-General Robertson, at Green Pond, S.C., so soon as it can be spared by you. Respectfully, your obedient servant, JNO. M. OTEY, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
MARCH 4-MAY 14, 1864.--Operations in Florida. Report of Maj. Gen. Patton Anderson, C. S. Army, commanding District of Florida .HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DISTRICT OF FLORIDA, In the Field, near Jacksonville, Fla., May 14, 1864. . Capt. H. W. FEILDEN, Assistant Adjutant-General
CAPTAIN: In compliance with the request of the major-general commanding, Samuel Jones, communicated to me in your letter of the 10th instant, I have the honor to submit the following report of the operations of the troops of this district, and of those, so far as known, of the enemy, during the last two months: On the 4th March last, in obedience to an order from the War Department, I assumed command of the District of Florida. The district was divided into sub-districts, the geographical limits of which are as follows, viz: Sub-District No. 1 embraces all that portion of Florida between the Choctawhatchee River and Choctawhatchee Bay, in West Florida, and the Suwannee River; Sub-District No. 2 embraces all of Florida east of the Suwannee River. Brig. Gen. William M. Gardner commands Sub-District No. 1 and Brigadier-General Finegan commands Sub-District No. 2.
At the time I assumed command the enemy occupied Jacksonville in force, estimated upon the best information that could be obtained at about 12,000, having strong fortifications on the land side of the place, with the additional defense of two gun-boats in the Saint John's River. Our forces, numbering at that time about 8,000 of all arms, had taken position, infantry and artillery, on the west side of McGirt's Creek, about 12 miles from Jacksonville, at the point where the railroad and wagon roads from that place to Lake City cross the creek. General Beauregard had preceded me a few days to this point, and was present, supervising and directing our movements. Breast-works and stockades were immediately constructed at this position, and similar fortifications of a more permanent character were thrown up at Baldwin, 8 miles in rear of McGirt's Creek, and at the intersection of the railroads running from Fernandina to Cedar Keys and from Jacksonville to Lake City.
For a time there were many indications which gave promise of an advance by the enemy, and every preparation was made to meet him at McGirt's Creek in the first place, or in the event he should turn that position, or in any other way compel us to abandon it, then at Baldwin, where it was believed a successful defense might be made against three times our number. During this time, too, there was considerable alarm felt by many of the citizens of Middle Florida on account of recent depredations committed or threatened by bands of deserters, disloyal persons, and bandits, who had been gathering and forming semi-organizations along the coast and in the southern and inaccessible portions of Taylor and La Fayette Counties, and who had become emboldened to acts of plunder and spoliation by reason of the withdrawal of troops from that region for the purpose of meeting the invasion by the enemy in the eastern portion of the State.
South Florida, by reason of the same causes, was infested with similar bands. In each of these regions the enemy was known to be inciting the disaffected to deeds of disloyalty, plunder, and bloodshed, furnishing arms, subsistence, clothing, and encouragement to all who would desert the Confederate colors and resist the enforcement of the Confederate laws. In this way several planters in Jefferson and Madison Counties, bordering on the disaffected region of Taylor and La Fayette, lost a number of slaves, who were either enticed or taken by force away, and who found their way to the enemy's vessels along the Gulf coast between Saint Mark's and Tampa. Cattle were also stolen and carried to the enemy from those counties in South Florida whence has been drawn a large proportion of the beef supplied by our commissaries of subsistence. Brigadier-General Gardner, in whose sub-district are Taylor and La Fayette Counties, was directed to take vigorous and prompt steps to suppress the lawlessness of these bandits within the limits of his command, and preparations were made to use like measures against those in South Florida so soon as a sufficient force for that purpose could be safely detached from our main force, then confronting superior numbers at Jacksonville. In the mean time, however, and about the 4th March, General Beauregard issued a proclamation offering pardon, on certain conditions, to those in South Florida who had deserted from the Confederate Army, or who were absent from it without leave, and to those who were evading conscription.
On the 20th March, the Governor of the State issued a similar proclamation, approved by the general commanding, addressed to and affecting those similarly situated in Taylor and La Fayette Counties. Some availed themselves of the terms of this latter proclamation; how many, I am unable to state, though it is believed that the number was not large. A few also in South Florida embraced the terms offered them, but most of that few are believed to have either gone back to the enemy or are remaining at home, where it is difficult to lay hands on them. By the terms of the proclamation they were to report themselves to the agents of the Subsistence Department in that region, and were to be detailed to remain there as cattle drivers.
In the latter part of March, General Beauregard left Florida for Carolina, having first explained to me his views and instructions in regard to future operations. At this time our effective force operating near Jacksonville was as follows: Infantry, 6,290; cavalry, 1,568; artillery, 487; and that of the enemy in Jacksonville was estimated at 10,000 of all arms, with 1,500 at Palatka, and from 500 to 1,000 at each of the places Saint Augustine and Fernandina. Having succeeded by the 1st of April, through the energy and skill of Capt. E. Pliny Bryan, of General Beauregard's staff, in planting a number of torpedoes in the channel of the Saint John's River, about 15 miles above Jacksonville, by which the enemy's communication with his garrison at Palatka was rendered precarious, and deeming it probable now that another advance on his part was not contemplated, a vigorous assault upon Palatka which would result in its capture was thought to be practicable. This belief was greatly encouraged by the fact, on the morning of the 1st of April, at 4 o'clock, one of the largest transports of the enemy while descending the river from Palatka exploded a torpedo and sunk in 3 fathoms of water. A section of artillery, under Lieutenant Gamble, supported by infantry under command of Captain Grieve, First Georgia Regulars, was dispatched at once to complete the wreck.
They reached the bank of the river opposite the wreck a little before daylight on the 2d, and after firing a few rounds at that portion of the boat which was above water, Captain Bryan, with 2 men, boarded her and set fire to her upper works, which soon reduced them to the water's edge. She proved to be the double-stack, side-wheel steamer Maple Leaf, and was loaded with the camp and garrison equipage of three regiments recently arrived at Jacksonville on account of some hurried necessity which required her first to proceed up to Palatka.
On the 2d of April, therefore, Brigadier-General Finegan was directed to proceed by rail from Baldwin to Waldo with about 2,500 infantry and six pieces of artillery; thence by the nearest practicable route to Palatka, which place he was to attack and carry, after which he was to be governed by circumstances and await further orders. Between Waldo and Palatka he was to be joined by Lieutenant-Colonel Martin, Sixth Florida Battalion, with about 400 infantry, and Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, Fourth Georgia Cavalry, with the same number of cavalry. On account of the condition of the transportation by rail from Baldwin to Waldo he was provokingly detained, consuming more hours than miles traveled in reaching the latter place. It had been expected he would reach Palatka in time to commence the assault on the morning of the 4th, and he had not been able to move his whole command from Waldo, which is distant from Palatka about 38 miles.
On the night of the 3d April, our scout in the river between the bar and Jacksonville reported the following arrivals at Jacksonville from sea, viz: The Canonicus, with a few white troops; the Dictator, crowded with negro troops; large black steamer, with a few white troops and horses; the Mary Benton, a good many white troops, horses, and mules; the Delaware, crowded with white troops; a black transport, largest size, crowded with white troops; a large nameless transport, crowded with white troops. And early on the morning of the 4th the same scout reported the following arrivals, viz: A gunboat, crowded with horses and men; two large transports, crowded with men and horses. On the 30th March, the Maple Leaf and Charles Houghton had arrived with men and horses on board. Under these circumstances it was deemed prudent to recall Finegan, which was done on the 5th instant. On that night, too, the same scout reported the arrival in the afternoon of a large transport, crowded with horses and a few men, and after dark another large white transport; could not tell if she had troops. These indications pointed to another attempt on the part of the enemy to advance into the interior of and occupy the State. All of our available force was held in hand, and every preparation made to meet him.
In the mean time Brigadier-General Gardner, with a small force and by vigorous measures, had succeeded to a great extent in breaking up the rendezvous of the deserters, &c., in Taylor County and La Fayette, and in restoring quiet, and establishing a sense of security along the borders of Madison and Jefferson, the threatened settlements. As yet I have received no detailed report of these operations and am therefore unable to speak of them, except in general terms. South Florida, though being more distant and very difficult of access by our troops, was still infested by bands of deserters, skulkers, and Yankees, whose numbers and depredations were daily increasing. Threatened by such a force as the enemy then had at Jacksonville, it would have been extremely imprudent, if not criminally rash, to have made any detachment from our main force in front of Jacksonville, for the purpose of operating in a field so distant as that which comprises the haunts of these outlaws.
On the 12th of April, the enemy withdrew his garrison from Palatka. One regiment of negro troops (Kansas), under Montgomery, was transferred to the opposite (east) side of the Saint John's, at the village, Picolata, where it still remains, partially fortified, and having a few pieces of light artillery in the works. The other four regiments composing the garrison at Palatka were either sent across to Saint Augustine and then took shipping for the north, or they marched down the Saint John's on the east side to Jacksonville. As the peninsula embraced between the lower Saint John's and the Atlantic, forming the parallelogram on the map,, Saint Augustine, Picolata, Jacksonville, and mouth of Saint John' s is wholly within the enemy's possession and very difficult of access by our scouts, it was impossible to keep ourselves well advised of all his movements on that side of the river; hence I am uncertain as to the movements of the four regiments above referred to, after they left Palatka.
On the 8th day of April, the enemy commenced sending troops away from Jacksonville by sea, and has continued to do so up to the 11th May, as per reports of scouts on the banks of the river below Jacksonville, of which the following are extracts:
- April 8.--One transport, 300 to 500 troops.
- April 9.--Two transports, one with 200 or 300, one with 300 or 400 troops.
- April 13.--Three transports loaded with troops; and the Charles Houghton made three trips to some point just below Jacksonville, loaded each trip with troops.
- April 15.--One transport loaded with troops.
- April 16.--Four transports loaded with from 1,500 to 2,000 troops.
- April 17.--Two transports loaded with 800 troops.
- April 20.--One transport loaded with 600 troops.
- April 21.--Two transports (one had about 600 troops).
- April 22.--Two transports loaded with troops and horses.
- April 23.--One transport loaded with troops and horses.
- April 24.--One transport loaded with 500 or 600 troops.
- April 25.--Two large steamers loaded with troops.
- April 27.--Two transports, some troops on board.
- April 28.--One steamer loaded with wagons and artillery.
- April 29.--One large steamer loaded with troops.
- May 9.--One transport loaded with troops. The Mary Benton, horses and many troops. I have estimated that the troops sent off from Jacksonville as above reported amount in all to about 9,200. Other vessels have left Jacksonville between the 8th April and the 11th May, but either few troops were on them, or they passed down the river in the night so that the scout could not see whether they contained troops or not. It is possible that 1,500 should be added to the above estimate to cover all who were sent off without our knowledge. There have been sent off from this district the following troops at dates annexed:
- April 14.--The Eleventh South Carolina Regiment.
- April 16.--The Fifty-ninth Virginia Regiment.
- April 16 and 17.--The Eighteenth South Carolina.
- April 17.--A siege train, Major Buist.
- April 17.--Twenty-sixth Virginia Regiment.
- April 19.--Colquitt's brigade, Thirty-second Georgia Regiment, Wheaton's battery, Guerard's battery.
- April 21.--Gamble's battery.
- April 23.--Fourth Georgia Cavalry.
- April 29.--Sixty-fourth Georgia Regiment.
- May 2.--Volunteers for Navy, 97 men in all.
- May 4.--Fifth Georgia Cavalry Regiment.
- May 7.--First Georgia Regulars.
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#9HDQRS. DEPT. OF S. CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA, Charleston, S. C., June 24, 1864.Maj. Gen. L. McLAWS, Commanding at Savannah:
GENERAL: I am instructed by the major-general commanding to authorize you to send through the enemy's lines, via Port Royal Ferry, the families of those men who have deserted to the enemy. In future all communication with the enemy will be through Port Royal Ferry and not through Florida, without an order from these headquarters to that effect. I have to-day addressed a communication to the medical director informing him that it is considered judicious that the office of chief surgeon of the Third Military District should be merged with that of the District of Georgia. In a letter written to you of this date you will find the position of the reserve officers laid down as interpreted by these headquarters. The very light armament of Barnwell's, Jo. Thompson, and Clinch's batteries is under consideration, and will be improved if practicable. The major-general commanding directs that you release the two men, Fry, on parole, provided they report daily at your headquarters. A report has been forwarded to the War Department in reference to the untrustworthy element in the Twenty-second Georgia Battalion, with a recommendation that these men be weeded out and able-bodied conscripts supplied to fill their places from the conscript camp. It would be as well to transfer the dismounted men of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry, unable to remount themselves, to depleted companies in this battalion .It is understood that there are between 20 or 30 of these men in Fourth Georgia Cavalry. It has been suggested, and with an air of probability, that the double-turreted monitors seen off Savannah, and another one seen to pass the bar the day before yesterday, are ordinary monitors, equipped with a movable deck-house. If this view is correct, it will account for the difference of opinion, as expressed by your officers.Respectfully, your obedient servant, H. W. FEILDEN, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN THE ATLANTA CAMPAIGN, FROM MAY 1, 1864, TO JUNE 30, 1864.--#6 RICHMOND, June 27, 1864. General J. E. JOHNSTON:
We have no cavalry in East Tennessee, and that in Mississippi is fully occupied by the enemy in superior force. The Fourth Georgia Cavalry has this morning been ordered to join you from near Savannah. There is no other force available. BRAXTON BRAGG. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXVIII/4
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#9 HEADQUARTERS, Savannah, Ga., June 29, 1864. Major STRINGFELLOW,
Assistant Adjutant-General: Your order to send the Fourth Georgia Cavalry to General Johnston has been received, and instructions have been sent to have it carried out. The departure of that regiment, without replacing it by other forces, would, as you are undoubtedly aware, leave the southwestern part of Georgia, from the Ogeechee to Saint Mary's, without a single soldier, excepting the garrison at Fort McAllister, one company of reserves, and one of artillery.
The regiment is so scattered that it will take some time to collect all the companies. For the more complete equipment and arming of the men, and to give greater protection to the railroad against raiding parties, which might land at various eligible points between the Ogeechee and the Altamaha, some now watched by pickets and others unguarded, I had ordered six companies to be concentrated at some point in Liberty County. I suppose by this time those companies have been collected and are in motion in this direction from the other side of the Altamaha, which concentration will facilitate the movement now ordered. But the other four companies are so much scattered it will take time to collect them.
Shall I send on the six companies and not wait for the concentration of the whole regiment? I ask this because the telegram of General Cooper implies a concentration before leaving. To guard against the ill effects upon the planting interests along the coast by the sudden withdrawal of the Fourth Regiment, I have directed that three companies of the Third South Carolina Regiment, now in the Third Military District of South Carolina, which were sent from Georgia to reinforce Colonel Colcock's command, at the time of the excitement incident to the reported raid from Port Royal, be sent back to the Georgia coast, so as to picket the most important and exposed points.
I have called on Colonel Browne, aide-de-camp of the President, who is superintendent of conscription in the State of Georgia, requesting him to give me the use of six companies, or of some companies which he has under his control by authority from Richmond, and which are now on duty through the State arresting deserters and conscripts. No answer has been received to my application. I will make requisition on General Cobb for some more companies of reserves. Unless I receive those reinforcements it will not require a large force to land and burn the bridges over the Altamaha and Ogeechee, and there are no works to defend the Ogeechee bridge and the long trestle on the west side.
There is or was a considerable excitement a few days ago in Pierce County, caused by a number of women armed with guns and pistols, who broke open a store-house of one of the tithe collectors, and carried off several wagon-loads of bacon, and burned some houses. A prominent citizen who came up to inform me of it, stated that the people of property were much alarmed, as the women boasted that they had plenty of men to back them if resisted, and they stated that there were a number of deserters in the Okefenokee Swamp who, they said, would soon commence carrying off the negroes, as the Yankees had offered them $50 in gold for every negro they run off.
I sent Colonel Fiser there, with an armed party, to examine into the matter. I mention this to show the bad effects which will follow should the regiment be moved at once, and, therefore, to request that the movement may be delayed until I hear from Colonel Browne and General Cobb, and can get the reinforcements on the way at ]east to take their places. The delay which will necessarily ensue from waiting for the regiment to concentrate will perhaps answer all purposes, but one or two days more may be necessary. I have given Colonel Colcock authority to visit you in Charleston in order to represent the consequences to follow from the withdrawal of Kirk's squadron from his command at this time, and request your consideration on the subject. Very respectfully, L. McLAWS, Major-General, Commanding O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#9CHARLESTON, S.C., July 1, 1864. Maj. Gen. L. McLAWS, Savannah, Ga.:
Send on the six companies Fourth Georgia Cavalry, and let the rest follow as soon as possible. The desired order in regard to Kirk's battalion has been given, and General Anderson has been directed to send you Colonel Hood's battalion also. By order: CHAS. S. STRINGFELLOW, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#10, HARLESTON, S.C., July 5, 1864. Maj. Gen. L. McLAWS, Savannah, Ga.:
Send one-third of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry to Atlanta in charge of all the horses of the regiment, and order the remaining two-thirds of the men to this place. CHAS. S. STRINGFELLOW, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#10 CHARLESTON, S.C., July 6, 1864. Brig. Gen. B. H. ROBERTSON, Adams' Run, S.C.:
Three hundred men of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry are on the cars now coming to this place. Stop them at such point as you deem best, and send them to re-enforce Jenkins. They left Savannah at 6 p.m. CHAS. S. STRINGFELLOW, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#10 CHARLESTON, S.C., July 6, 1864. Lieutenant-Colonel HARRIS, Commanding Fourth Georgia [Cavalry] Regiment:
When you get to Adams' Run report to Brigadier-General Robertson, commanding, for orders to reinforce the command on John's Island. CHAS. S. STRINGFELLOW, Assistant Adjutant-General.
CHARLESTON, S.C., July 6, 1864. Lieutenant-Colonel HARRIS, Commanding Fourth Georgia [Cavalry] Regiment:
When you get to Adams' Run report to Brigadier-General Robertson, commanding, for orders to re-enforce the command on John's Island. CHAS. S. STRINGFELLOW, Assistant Adjutant-General O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#10 CHARLESTON, S.C., July 7, 1864. Brig. Gen. WILLIAM B. TALIAFERRO, Via Royall's House, James Island:
The troops must cross by the Chesterfield after dark. Send Bonaud's battalion, Colonel Harrison, with all his men, and the Fourth Georgia Cavalry Regiment. They will report to Brigadier-General Robertson, and if he is not there Colonel Harrison will assume command. CHAS. S. STRINGFELLOW, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
JANUARY 1-NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--Operations in Charleston Harbor and Vicinity, S.C. No. 39.--Report of Col. George P. Harrison, jr., Thirty-second Georgia Infantry, commanding brigade, of action at Burden's Causeway, John's Island. HEADQUARTERS ADVANCED FORCES, John's Island, S.C., July 10, 1864. Capt. T. HENRY JOHNSTON, Assistant Adjutant-General.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report of the assault upon the enemy's works on the morning of the 9th instant:
Having been ordered by Brigadier-General Robertson to assault the enemy in his entrenchments at daylight with my brigade, consisting of the Thirty-second Georgia Regiment, Lieutenant-Colonel Bacon commanding; the Forty-seventh Georgia Regiment, Colonel Edwards commanding, and Bonaud's battalion, Major Bonaud commanding, I moved it forward at 2 a.m. about 1? miles from its bivouac of the night before, and formed line of battle immediately in front of a hedge held by our troops, and about 700 or 800 yards from the enemy's works across an open field.
Having thrown forward a line of skirmishers covering my entire front, at the dawn of day I ordered the whole line to advance to the assault, the Thirty-second Georgia being on the right, the Forty-seventh on the left, and Bonaud's battalion in the center, the Thirty-second and Bonaud's being separated by a hedge road running perpendicularly to our line and toward the works of the enemy.
Having advanced about 350 yards, my skirmishers came upon the pickets of the enemy, who fired upon us and hastily retreated. With a loud cheer from the whole line my skirmishers dashed off in pursuit, closely followed by the main body. A rapid fire was at once opened upon us by the enemy behind his works, and as we moved onward it became more accurate and deadly until within about 250 yards of their entrenchments, when it became plainly visible that the enemy were in strong force and ready for us. Volley after volley, linked as it were by scattering reports, were poured into our advancing ranks, and musket-balls swept the field in reckless profusion, mowing down many of our brave and gallant men; but my line pressed steadily on, never at any time showing the least sign of wavering. Our advance was bloodily contested along the whole line until within a few paces of the enemy's works, and in some places till our men mounted the parapet, when he gave way, leaving his works in our possession.
Our loss would have been much greater up to this time but for the dense smoke from the enemy's fire, which from the peculiar state of the atmosphere did not rise, but hid us from the sight of the foe. It was so thick that in places a man could not be seen five paces. Feeling satisfied that the enemy was much stronger in numbers than ourselves, and having been informed of the strength of the ground immediately in our front, I halted my line upon the captured works and opened a rapid fire upon the retreating foe, with considerable effect, the exact amount of which it is difficult to estimate, as the enemy carried off his wounded with him, and probably a portion of his dead, the dense woods affording him this facility with little risk.
Having gained the entire front line of the enemy's works, and Major Jenkins having come to my assistance with the First Georgia Regulars, a detachment of Thirty-second Georgia Regiment, and a portion of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry (dismounted), which had been held in reserve, I immediately threw forward two companies of Thirty-second Georgia, under Major Holland, of same regiment, and three companies of Forty-seventh Georgia and Bonaud's battalion together, under Major Cone, of Forty-seventh Georgia, with instructions to press the enemy closely and discover his next position, which was found to be behind another line of works just beyond a creek, passable for artillery only by a narrow bridge, which the enemy tore up as he fell back.
About this time I received instructions from Brigadier-General Robertson not to assault the enemy further, but to hold the ground already taken. This I did, keeping my skirmishers well up to the enemy and exchanging a rapid fire with him during the morning and at intervals during the afternoon. Toward evening the firing ceased, and under the cover of night the enemy withdrew from our front and fell back to his gun-boats, leaving considerable quartermaster, commissary, and ordnance stores in our possession. My whole brigade displayed great coolness and bravery, and too much cannot be said in commendation of both officers and men. Enclosed find list of casualties. Very respectfully, GEO. P. HARRISON, JR., Colonel Thirty-second Georgia Infantry. Regiment., Comanding., &c. O.R. SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1
JANUARY 1-NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--Operations in Charleston Harbor and Vicinity, S.C. No. 29.--Reports of Maj. Gen. Samuel Jones, C. S. Army, commanding Department of South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, of operations April 20-September 1. Return of Casualties in the Confederate forces on John's and James Islands, July 1 to 10, 1864.[Compiled from nominal list.]
O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1,
- O = Officers. A =Aggregate. M=Men.
- Killed. Wounded.
- Command. O M O M A
- 1st Georgia Regulars, July 7 .... 2 2 5 9
- 1st Georgia Regulars, July 9 .... 1 .... 4 5
- 4th Georgia Cavalry. July 9 .... .... .... 2 2
- 2d South Carolina Cavalry, July 7 .... 6 .... 9 15
- Inglis Light Artillery, July 9 .... .... .... 1 1
- Marion Light Artillery .... .... .... 3 3
- Washington Light Artillery .... .... .... 2 2
- Grand total .... 33 8 84 125
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#11CHARLESTON, S.C., July 11, 1864. Brig. Gen. B. H. ROBERTSON, Via Rantowles:
Return to Colonel Colcock the troops sent to you from his district. Take the Fourth Georgia Cavalry Regiment with you to Adams' Run by the shortest route. Give Colonel Colcock any assistance called for in case of necessity. CHAS. S. STRINGFELLOW, Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
JANUARY 1-NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--Operations in Charleston Harbor and Vicinity, S.C. No. 29.--Reports of Maj. Gen. Samuel Jones, C. S. Army, commanding Department of South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, of operations April 20-September 1. CHARLESTON, S.C., July 12, 1864. General SAMUEL COOPER, Adjutant and Inspector General, Richmond, Va.
Special Orders, No. 89, from your office, orders Fifty-fifth Georgia Regiment from Johnston's army to Savannah. I presume the Sixty-fifth was meant, as the Fifty-fifth is not with Johnston. Can you not correct the error and order the Sixty-fifth to me? In consequence of enemy's attack I have 300 of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry here dismounted; their horses sent to Atlanta. Enemy has made no attack here since my last. I think they will try at some other point of my lines. SAM. JONES, Major- General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND FLORIDA AND ON THE GEORGIA COAST, FROM MARCH 1 TO NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--#11HARLESTON, S.C., July 13, 1864. General JOSEPH E. JOHNSTON, Atlanta, Ga.:
The men of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry, who were ordered to Charleston during the late attack, leave for Atlanta tomorrow morning. SAM. JONES, Major-General. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/2
JANUARY 1-NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--Operations in Charleston Harbor and Vicinity, S.C.No. 48.--Reports of Maj. John Jenkins, Third South Carolina Cavalry, of operations July 3-10 and the burning of Legareville. JOHN'S ISLAND, July 14, 1864. Captain JOHNSTON, Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.
CAPTAIN: In obedience to orders from Brigadier-General Robertson the following report of the operations of my command during the recent movements of the enemy on John's Island is respectfully submitted:
The enemy on the 3d instant landed three regiments, with a few cavalry, on Seabrook Island; also a body of infantry, with some artillery, at Legare's Point place and Legareville, and a third body of troops at Rockville. Capt. E. L. Parker, then commanding on John's Island, having no force to resist their advance, judiciously withdrew his troops, a mere picket of about 80 mounted men, to Curtis', and scouted the island in his front, and placed a piece of artillery to cover the crossing from Wadmalaw.
The enemy rebuilt the bridge over the Haulover and crossed their troops and wagon train from Seabrook to John's Island, and advanced up to the Cocked Hat, where they encamped and formed line of battle.
On the 4th, they marched down the Kiawah River road to the Stono side of the island, concentrating their forces for their advance up the river road. Having made a personal reconnaissance to the Haulover and ascertained definitely this move, I sent a scouting party down the Stono River road to learn the position and strength of the enemy. This party encountered their advance at McElhany's on the morning of the 5th, and were fired into, W. Godfrey, of the Stono Scouts being shot severely in the foot, but escaped and brought me intelligence that the enemy were advancing in very heavy force.
I immediately ordered all the cavalry except a few vedettes to that side of the island to confront and check, or at least retard, their advance. I had that morning been reinforced by the First Georgia Regular Regiment, Major Wayne, about 230 men. My force being insufficient to beat the enemy back, I marched with 'the troops and a Napoleon gun, of the Marion, and a howitzer, of Charles' battery, down the Bohicket and Edendale roads to get in rear of the enemy, with the hope of alarming them for their communications, and thus inducing a withdrawal, which I had not force to compel by a direct attack in front.
We attacked and routed a body of troops (colored), killing 2 of them, at Huntscum's Corner, and advanced to attack their force at Roper's and the Aberpoolie, when I received information that the enemy in overwhelming numbers were steadily driving our cavalry, who were too feeble to offer effective resistance to them, and that they had advanced to Gervais'. Upon this information of their rapid progress we countermarched 11 miles to get in their front, and took position at Grimball's Waterloo place.
On the morning of the 6th, enemy threw forward his skirmishers, who approached to within 400 yards of our line, but were dispersed and driven back in confusion by a few rounds of canister and shell, which did some execution among them.
On the 7th, they took possession of some buildings in Gervais' field with their sharpshooters, who were very annoying, but whom we finally succeeded in dislodging and silencing. The enemy for the first time brought forward artillery, and a sharp engagement ensued between their and our artillery, the two guns of the Marion, under Lieutenant Murdoch, two howitzers, Charles' battery, under command of Lieutenant Logan, making excellent practice, all under the supervision of Captain Parker.
At 11 a.m., the firing had ceased, and everything being quiet at 3 p.m., I left for Charleston to see General Jones, who General Robertson informed me had been endeavoring unsuccessfully to communicate with me by signals. During my absence the enemy attacked and succeeded in turning our extreme right by a flank movement, but the cavalry (dismounted), under command of Captain Clark, Second South Carolina Regiment, made a most determined and desperate resistance, his company of 21 men present losing 13 men, 7 killed and 6 wounded. He was ably seconded by Captain Dean, of same regiment, who with 13 men charged the enemy on their left flank, throwing them into confusion.
A gun of the Marion, judiciously posted, rendered much assistance in repelling the enemy or holding him in check until our right was re-enforced by companies from the First and Thirty-second Georgia Regiments, drawn from portion of our line which was not engaged and led to the assistance of Major Wayne, commanding in my absence, who displayed alike correct judgment and cool courage and skill in handling his troops, and handsomely repulsed the enemy with loss in repeated assaults upon our line.
One of the Parrott guns of the Washington Artillery, Lieutenant Horsey commanding, was particularly effective, being advanced in front of our line and enfilading the assaulting party of the enemy. Our officers and men exhibited steadiness and unflinching firmness. Major Wayne's report of the action renders anything beyond this general reference on my part superfluous.
On the 8th, General Robertson arrived and took command. Re-enforcements came up. He determined to attack the enemy and drive him from the island. At 2 o'clock on the morning of the 9th, I was ordered by General Robertson to direct Colonel Harrison, of the Thirty-second Georgia, to advance upon the enemy and carry his lines, unless he encountered too severe a fire of artillery, in which event he was to withdraw and not sacrifice his men. I was ordered by the general to take command of the second or supporting line, consisting of three companies Thirty-second Georgia Regiment, First Regiment Georgia Regulars, Major Wayne, and detachment Fourth Georgia Cavalry, Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, to act as circumstances might require.
Colonel Harrison at 3.30 a.m. moved forward his line of battle, formed parallel with the enemy's breast-works. His attacking force consisted of seven companies of his own regiment, which formed his right wing, and Bonaud's battalion and the Forty-seventh Georgia Regiment, Colonel Edwards, which formed his left wing. His line of battle extended about 400 yards in length, preceded by a line of skirmishers of double that front and 300 yards in advance. The Stono River road, with hedges on both sides of it, cut his line of battle in two. Colonel Harrison, being unacquainted with the ground and position of the enemy, desired me to suggest the plan of attack, and I submitted two--either to mass his troops on the right of the road and carry the enemy's left, merely attacking his right with skirmishers (if this attack on enemy's left succeeded his right would be isolated, as his right was in front of a creek running in his rear up to the road and said to be impassable), or, second, to form his line of battle on both sides of the road and pierce their center. The latter was preferred and adopted.
I was then directed to hold the line occupied by our troops (between Gervais' and Grimball's), in order that if Colonel Harrison was repulsed and pursued by the enemy we might be in position with fresh troops to cover his retreat and check their pursuit. Colonel Harrison then ordered the charge, and his line moved steadily and sternly across the field, met and drove in the enemy's skirmishers, and advanced upon their breastworks. His skirmishers, encountering a fearfully heavy fire, were checked until reinforced by his line of battle, when the onward movement was resumed under a storm of bullets.
In the mistiness of the morning, the smoke resting upon the ground, I was unable to see his troops, and supposing from the continuance of the rapid fire on both sides that Colonel Harrison had encountered too heavy a force entrenched for him to carry their works without assistance, and that his men, held at bay, would be decimated and perhaps eventually driven back, to insure success I ordered the advance of the entire reserve to his support. The left wing of my line, commanded by Captain Fort, not coming forward immediately (whether from not promptly receiving the order or other cause), I moved forward without waiting for it with our right wing, consisting of detachment of Fourth Georgia Cavalry (dismounted), commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, and the First Regiment Georgia Regulars, commanded by Major Wayne, the right of our attacking force appearing to me to be in need of instant help. But while our line advanced steadily and rapidly under a severe fire, which they had to endure with loss, without returning, for our men in front, before we reached Colonel Harrison, that gallant officer and the splendid troops under him, bravely led by their officers, had swept the enemy's lines and his skirmishers pushed beyond. Here he paused and the enemy brought up his reserves and his artillery and destroyed the bridge across the head of creek, and, sweeping the front of our new line (taken from them) with canister and shrapnel, advanced their skirmishers, who became sharply engaged with ours almost throughout the day.
At night the enemy quietly withdrew to the protection of their gun-boats, and next clay embarked their forces, burning their commissary stores ashore. List of casualties in my command having been furnished by immediate commanders, a recapitulation is unnecessary. Respectfully submitted. JOHN JENKINS, Major. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1
JANUARY 1-NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--Operations in Charleston Harbor and Vicinity, S.C.No. 32.--Reports of Brig. Gen. Beverly H. Robertson, C. S. Army, commanding Second and Sixth Military Districts, of operations July 7-10.HDQRS. SECOND AND SIXTH MILITARY DISTRICTS, July 14, 1864 Maj. CHARLES S. STRINGFELLOW,Assistant Adjutant-General, Charleston, S.C...
MAJOR: Information having reached me that a large Federal force had occupied John's Island, I have the honor to report that on the afternoon of Thursday, the 7th instant, I left this station and proceeded direct to Church Flats, where I halted until after midnight. Colonel Kemper, returning from the front, reported that on the same afternoon the enemy had made several assaults on our lines, all of which were handsomely repulsed by the troops under command of Maj. R. A. Wayne, First Georgia Regulars, in the temporary absence of Major Jenkins. A report of that engagement is herewith enclosed.
Learning that a renewal of the attack was anticipated early next morning, I immediately ordered forward the Fourth Georgia Cavalry (dismounted), under Lieutenant-Colonel Harris, and pushed on with my staff. Having been informed that reinforcements would be landed during the night at Townsend's (opposite Fort Pemberton), I at once resolved to attack the enemy and prevent his fortifying the position then held, commanding our works on James Island; but an accident to the steamer prevented the arrival of the troops.
About 2 p.m. on the 8th, Col. G. P. Harrison reported with the Thirty-second Georgia Regiment, Forty-seventh Georgia Regiment, and Bonaud's battalion of Georgians. Having reconnoitered the enemy's position, and finding him strongly posted and entrenched, both in front and rear of Burden's Causeway, and knowing that a perfectly practicable road, not exceeding 5 miles, led around his left to the rear of his second line, I determined to detach Colonel Harrison's command to execute this flank movement, while with the remaining force I would attack in front. I submitted my plan to the several commanders summoned for the purpose, and after a thorough discussion of the ground by Captain Walpole and others acquainted with the country it was fully concurred in. Half past 3 o'clock was the hour selected, and signal rockets were distributed to insure unanimity of action. Unfortunately the ambulances, medical stores, and ammunition wagons of Harrison's brigade had been sent around by Church Flats and did not arrive until next morning. I was thus compelled to abandon a movement from which I had every reason to expect the most splendid results. I then gave the necessary orders for assaulting the enemy's works at daylight, placing Colonel Harrison's brigade in front.
The remaining force, consisting of the First Georgia Regulars, Fourth Georgia Cavalry (dismounted detachment), and three companies of Thirty-second Georgia Regiment, I placed under the orders of Maj. John Jenkins, with instructions to support Colonel Harrison. Owing to the nature of the ground but little artillery could be used. The line of attack was quietly and rapidly formed, and the alacrity displayed in their preparations for a forward movement reflected great credit upon those gallant Georgians. They had advanced but a few hundred yards when our line of skirmishers encountered the enemy, who fired and immediately fell back. With shouts of defiance and amid the deadly bullets of the foe our brave men pressed steadily onward to the enemy's breast-works, from which they quickly drove them in confusion to their second line, beyond Burden's Causeway.
Our loss, though heavy, would have been much greater but for a thick fog and the density of the atmosphere, which prevented the smoke from rising. A dense forest skirted the enemy's front lines, which enabled him to carry off under cover many of his dead and wounded, as was clearly evinced by the signs everywhere visible. His loss was considerable. We took but few prisoners. Our occupation of his front line completely thwarted the enemy's plans, as it secured to us the elevated ground between Burden's Causeway and Gervais' house, upon which a clearing was discovered, doubtless made with the intention of erecting batteries to enfilade our works on James Island.
The second position taken by the enemy was in rear of a causeway flanked by marshes, which were commanded by a line of breast-works. The bridge over causeway was destroyed in the enemy's retreat. Knowing that many lives would be sacrificed in dislodging him, I preferred strengthening my own lines and making a flank attack, which, however, was rendered unnecessary by the enemy's retreat during the night. A quantity of commissary stores, ammunition, and camp and garrison stores fell into our hands. For the information of the major-general commanding I desire to state that negro prisoners assert that Colonel Silliman, commanding Twenty-sixth Regiment U.S. Colored Troops, in the presence of Brig. Gen. R. Saxton (who has always commanded negroes), gave orders to show no quarter; also, that on Thursday, when the right of our line was temporarily pressed back, Private Cooper, Company B, Second South Carolina Cavalry, who was wounded, fell into the enemy's hands. When we recovered the ground it was discovered that he had been bayoneted in six or seven different places. I respectfully recommend that the Yankee General Foster be held to a strict accountability for such violation of civilized warfare.
You will please find enclosed the reports of separate commanders. Our entire loss is 37 killed and 91 wounded. The artillery, consisting of the Washington, Marion, and one section of Inglis Light Battery, all under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Kemper, was well served and did admirable execution. Colonel Harrison, Major Jenkins, and Major Wayne managed their troops with coolness and skill. First. Sergeant Gervais, of the Stono Scouts, rendered me invaluable assistance on frequent occasions, and I would especially recommend him to the favorable notice of the commanding general. Privates Miller and Bryan, of same company, volunteered their services and gallantly charged with the Forty-seventh Regiment. Private Augustus J. White, Company I, Second South Carolina Cavalry, displayed the most signal courage, charging on horseback with the infantry advance. Too much credit cannot be given a portion of the Second South Carolina Cavalry, under Captain Clark, who in the action on Thursday held the right of our line against an almost overwhelming force of the enemy. Out of 21 men 7 were killed and 6 wounded. My thanks are due to Maj. W. W. Harvie, commissary of subsistence; Captain Worthington, assistant adjutant-general; First Lieut. T. Henry Johnston, aide-de-camp; Capt. William Waller, and Lieut. A. G. Taylor, members of my staff, for their prompt transmission of orders on the field. Privates J. R. Wilson and W. C. Meggett, acting couriers, were exposed to heavy musketry fire and behaved well.
In conclusion, I would respectfully recommend the erection of works commanding the approach to Burden's Causeway. The position is an important one to the enemy, who will doubtless again attempt its possession .I am, major, respectfully, your obedient servant,B. H. ROBERTSON, Brigadier-General, Commanding O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1
UNION CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA (FROM FEBRUARY 1), SOUTH CAROLINA, SOUTHERN GEORGIA, AND EAST FLORIDA, FROM JANUARY 1, 1865, TO MARCH 23, 1865.--#4
Report of rebel defensive works on the Charleston and Savannah Railroad from the Edisto to the marshes on the Savannah River. : Pocotaligo.--No troops at Pocotaligo, except at the station; two cavalry companies at New Station; five men at Pocotaligo Station in September, 1864; militia regiment under Major Sorwin at Pocotaligo Station; three companies South Carolina cavalry at Pocotaligo in September. 1864. The depot for troops is at Pocotaligo and all stores were issued thence in July, 1864. The station is a mile and a half from Pocotaligo. The railroad bridge is only ten yards long. An enclosed work at the old bridge with three large guns, the ditch about five feet deep; no force stationed at the battery; very heavy works. At Pocotaligo, to the right of the main-road bridge, are works with seven guns. The works extend from the bridge all the way down to the Union road. At Pocotalig and Port Royal Ferry in July, 1864, were part of Fourth Georgia Cavalry (500), two companies Third South Carolina Cavalry (150), Bachman's and Stuart's batteries (250).
May 1-September 8, 1864.--THE ATLANTA (GEORGIA) CAMPAIGN No. 599.--Organization of the Confederate Forces. CAVALRY CORPS. Maj. Gen. JOSEPH WHEELER. MARTIN'S DIVISION. Reserves. 4th Georgia, Col. Duncan L. Clinch., Sanders' Battalion, Capt. Calvin F. Sanders. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXVIII/3
May 1-September 8, 1864.--THE ATLANTA (GEORGIA) CAMPAIGN No. 491.--Reports of Lieut. Col. Samson M. Archer, Seventeenth Iowa Infantry, of capture of train (July 5) and affair (August 15) near Tilton, Ga. HDQRS. SEVENTEENTH IOWA VET. VOL. INFANTRY, Tilton, Ga., August 20, 1864. Capt. W. W. McCAMMON, Actg. Asst. Adjt. Gen., 2d Brig., 3d Div., 15th Army Corps.
CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report of operations in this vicinity in which my regiment was engaged, on the 14th and 15th of the present month: On the afternoon of the 14th citizens from the neighborhood of Dalton reported heavy firing in that direction, and that the garrison was engaged against a very large force of rebel cavalry. At about 8 p.m. I received a communication from Col. Green B. Raum, commanding Second Brigade, Third Division, Fifteenth Army Corps, notifying me that a large force of the enemy was moving to the east of me, and directing me to withdraw Companies D and E (under command of Capt. Thomas Ping, three miles north of me), and to order Captains Snodgrass and Craig to report with their companies(H and I) to Colonel Laiboldt at Dalton. I immediately dispatched orders to the two detachments, and at 11.30 p.m. Captain Ping arrived with his command. During the evening I employed all my force, together with the engineer corps encamped here, in constructing breast-works and digging rifle-pits on each side of Swamp Creek, protecting the railroad bridge and water-tanks. At about 9 o'clock, having ascertained that a large body of the enemy were very near us, I sent out two men mounted on mules, on each road leading to the town, so that we might be notified of their approach in time to prepare for them. Scarcely five minutes elapsed before eight musket shots were fired in quick succession just across the Connesauga River, distant about 300 yards. I immediately formed my battalion and prepared to receive the enemy, which I supposed would attack us at once. One of my mounted men, Corporal Doan, Company C, returned at this junction and reported a heavy force across the river. He and his comrade had ridden past several rebels hidden in the angles of the fence beside the road, and when very near the reserves were halted. They at once wheeled around and started for the river under the fire above mentioned. Corporal Stafford, Company C, was thrown from his mule and captured. Finding that the enemy did not contemplate an immediate attack, I had thirty men of the engineer company posted on the bank covering the main ford of the river. At about 12 o'clock the rebels were heard crossing the river a considerable distance below the regular ford, and I immediately sent out Company H, Lieutenant Swearengin commanding, to skirmish with them providing they advanced upon us. Captain Browne, with his company (F), was also sent out on the Dalton road for the same purpose. At about 1 a.m. of the 15th, we could plainly hear the enemy destroying the railroad about one mile and a half below us. This continued for perhaps two hours, during which time the pickets at the main ford of the Connesauga exchanged occasional shots with those of the enemy (in which they mortally wounded a captain and sergeant of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry, showing that they were still there. We could hear them to the north and east of us, and I concluded that to divide my small force (about 240 muskets) and attempt to save the railroad, would not only leave the bridge, block-house, and tank insufficiently guarded, but would doubtless result in very severe loss, if not the capture of the entire command. I therefore kept my command inside the works. I have since learned that the rebel force numbered over 3,000 (General Martin's division of Wheeler's cavalry corps), and that they came here for the purpose of destroying the bridge, tank, and block-house, but were deceived by misrepresentations of our strength, and therefore did not attempt it. Captain Snodgrass, Company I, and Captain Craig's company (H) were captured on the morning of the 15th instant, and paroled on the 16th by General Wheeler, eight miles northeast of Spring Place. It was impossible for them to report to Colonel Laiboldt as directed, as the rebels were in strong force between the tank and Dalton. For further particulars I refer you to the accompanying report of Captain Snodgrass, commanding the detachment. Very respectfully, S. M. ARCHER, Lieutenant Colonel, Commanding. Seventeenth Iowa Vet. Vol. Infantry. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXVIII/3
JANUARY 1-NOVEMBER 13, 1864.--Operations in Charleston Harbor and Vicinity, S.C. No. 29.--Reports of Maj. Gen. Samuel Jones, C. S. Army, commanding Department of South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, of operations April 20 to September 1. HDQRS. DEPT. OF S. CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA, Charleston, August 22, 1864. General SAMUEL COOPER, Adjt. and Insp. Gen., C. S. Army, Richmond, Va.
GENERAL: I have the honor to submit the following report of military operations in the vicinity of this place from the 1st to the 10th ultimo: On the 1st ultimo, three brigades--Hatch's, Saxton's, and Birney's sailed from Hilton Head and united with the troops on Morris and Folly Islands and a portion of the naval force in an attack on the works defending this city. The land force, estimated at 8,000, was commanded in person by Major-General Foster, and the naval force by Rear-Admiral Dahlgren. The general plan of the enemy seems to have been to make, with the troops from Morris and Folly Islands and the navy, such a demonstration on our works on the south end of James Island as to induce us so to weaken the east lines on that island as to enable them to seize the important work, Fort Johnson.
At the same time a column was to move up John's Island and take positions from which our works on James Island could be enfiladed and taken in reverse, and where batteries could be established nearer the city than any they now have. The movement on John's Island was to be covered and aided by a demonstration in force on the Savannah Railroad in the vicinity of Adams' Run.
Accordingly, at day-dawn on the morning of the 2d, several regiments crossed over from Folly and Morris Islands to the south end of James Island, and after a sharp skirmish drove in our pickets and captured 2 field pieces. Two monitors and several gun-boats came up the Stono above Legareville and opened a heavy fire on our works. At the same time Hatch's and Saxton's brigades landed on Seabrook Island and Birney's sailed up the North Edisto and landed at White Point. All of our available force for the defense of Charleston was immediately concentrated on James Island. The First Georgia Regulars and 300 men of the Fourth Georgia Cavalry (dismounted), and three companies of the Third South Carolina Cavalry (also dismounted) were ordered from Savannah and its vicinity to John's Island.
At day-dawn on the 3d, about 1,000 of the enemy in barges made an attack on Fort Johnson. They were handsomely and thoroughly repulsed by the garrison of Fort Johnson, under Lieutenant-Colonel Yates, First South Carolina Artillery, with the loss to the enemy of 140 men, including a colonel and 5 other commissioned officers captured and many killed and wounded. At the same time General Birney advanced his command from White Point toward Adams' Run, but had marched less than 6 miles when they encountered at King's Creek a battery, supported by cavalry, which General Robertson had placed there, and after an hour or two of skirmishing Birney fell back to White Point, re-embarked his troops, and rejoined Hatch and Saxton, who in the mean time had crossed from Seabrook to John's Island and moved slowly up toward Charleston, our very small force on John's Island retiring skirmishing; and on the 7th, repulsed quite a formidable effort to drive them off, inflicting upon the enemy comparatively heavy loss. But the enemy nevertheless succeeded in gaming a position from which they could enfilade our works on James Island. It was manifestly of the utmost importance that they be dislodged and driven from John's Island. The force at my command was so small, and from the nature of the service manning heavy batteries on a long line of important works, that I could not concentrate a sufficient force for the purpose without endangering the most important line of works for the defense of the harbor, for, having command of the water and ample steam transportation, the enemy could in a few hours change their point of attack from John's to James or Sullivan's Islands or the Edisto.
I had reduced the force on Sullivan's Island to the lowest point I thought advisable to re-enforce James Island, and every available man along the line of the Savannah Railroad had been ordered to John's Island. As soon as the movement of the enemy was known on the 2d, I telegraphed General Johnston asking for reinforcements, and repeated my request on the 4th, and also telegraphed the War Department and General Whiting asking for reinforcements, and to Brigadier-General Chesnut asking for reserves. General Johnston sent me two small regiments (the Fifth and Forty-seventh Georgia) and General Whiting sent me two companies of artillery. I could obtain no State reserves.
When the troops sent by Generals Whiting and Johnston arrived Col. George P. Harrison was ordered to carry his own regiment, the Thirty-second Georgia, the Forty-seventh Georgia, and Bonaud's Georgia battalion to John's Island and to report to Brigadier-General Robertson, commanding that district. With the force thus collected, though not more than a third of the enemy's force on the island, it was intended to attack the enemy on the morning of the 8th, but the steamer sent through Wappoo Cut to transport the troops getting aground the attack was delayed.
At day-dawn on the 9th, the attack was gallantly made, Colonel Harrison commanding the advance column, composed of the Thirty-second and Forty-seventh Georgia Regiments and Bonaud's Georgia battalion, and the enemy was driven from one line of defensive works, but rallied behind a second line and maintained their position until late in the evening, when they withdrew and embarked on transports in the Stono, and on the 10th sailed out of the river. In the mean time, from the 2d to the 10th, the enemy's monitors and gun-boats (the naval force had been increased to twenty-two vessels of all classes) kept up a heavy fire on our picket-line and batteries, especially Battery Pringle, which replied with spirit and accuracy, crippling and driving out of action one of the monitors. But the active operations of the enemy were abandoned after their reverse on John's Island on the morning of the 9th.The details of these operations are given by the reports, which are herewith forwarded, of Brigadier-Generals Taliaferro, commanding on James Island, and Robertson, commanding on John's Island. I send also a copy of General Foster's confidential circular, found on the battle-field, directing the sailing of the expedition, and also a letter dated 5th of July and published in the New York Tribune, giving an account of the enemy's operations to that date. From them it will, I think, be seen that the expedition was one of considerable magnitude, from which much was expected. Officers captured concur in representing that the expedition was well and carefully considered and planned, and was confidently expected to result in the capture of Charleston. That it failed is due, under Providence, to the gallantry and good conduct of our officers and men.
Generals Taliaferro and Robertson, whose districts were attacked, were untiring in watchfulness and efforts to defeat the plans of the enemy, and they were admirably seconded by the officers and men. Col. George P. Harrison is deserving of special commendation, first, for driving back the enemy's line on James Island, and, secondly, for his gallantry and good conduct in the engagement on the morning of the 9th. General Ripley's lines were not attacked, but they were constantly exposed to attack, and the reduction of his forces to re-enforce General Taliaferro imposed greatly increased vigilance on him and his officers, which was met by them with alacrity. My staff officers performed their various duties with zeal and intelligence .I am much indebted to Flag Officer J. R. Tucker for his ready and efficient co-operation. Besides his vigilance in watching the approaches to the harbor, he placed at my disposal a naval battalion, armed as infantry, Lieutenant Dozier, C. S. Navy, commanding, which served well and faithfully in the works on James Island; and he also re-enforced Fort Johnson with a small detachment. Respectfully, your obedient servant, SAM. JONES, Major-General, Commanding O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXV/1
MAY 1-SEPTEMBER 8, 1864.--The Atlanta (Georgia) Campaign. No. 391.--Reports of Capt. Lewis M. B. Smith, First Wisconsin Cavalry. HEADQUARTERS FIRST WISCONSIN CAVALRY, Cartersville, Ga., September 6, 1864.
Regiment left Cleveland May 3, as a part of the Second Brigade, First Cavalry Division Department of the Cumberland, skirmishing daily with the enemy till 7th, when the brigade reached Varnell's Station. Colonel La Grange, on the 9th, was ordered to proceed on the Cleveland and Dalton road, with the Second Brigade, to develop the position of the enemy. Three miles from Varnell's Station nearly the entire command of General Wheeler, supported by one division of infantry, were found in strong position. After a severe engagement our force retired to Varnell's Station. Loss of the regiment: Col. O. H. La Grange, commanding Second Brigade, and Capt. G. O. Clinton, Company B, missing; Lieut. William Sandon, wounded and missing; Lieutenants Warren, Company C, and Crocker, Company D, wounded; Maj. N. Paine badly injured by fall from horse. The enemy suffered a greater loss in killed and wounded, as learned by citizens subsequently. From this time to the 31st the regiment, as part of the First Cavalry Division, Department of the Cumberland, was on the left, covering that flank of the army, and daily skirmishing with the enemy. On the 26th, five companies of the regiment and a portion of the Fourth Indiana Cavalry charged a brigade of the Confederate cavalry near Burnt Church, seven miles from Dallas, routing them, killing and wounding a large number, including Colonel Avery, Fourth Georgia Cavalry, mortally wounded. There Captain Harnden was severely wounded while gallantly leading the charge. Two were killed and 7 wounded. Total loss of the regiment in the month of May: Commissioned [officers] wounded, 3; missing, 3. Enlisted men--killed, 6; wounded, 42; missing, 14. Total, 68. June 1, at Burnt Church, at the left of the army, made a demonstration on the enemy's right. June 2, sharp skirmishing with the enemy. June 4, a detachment of the regiment drove out a small force of rebels and occupied Acworth. June 6, regiment, with Second Cavalry Brigade, drove the enemy out and occupied Big Shanty. June 9, made reconnaissance in front of the enemy's line. June 14, camped at Acworth. June 16, advanced to Lost Mountain; regiment under severe artillery fire from rebel batteries on the mountain; remained in the vicinity of Lost Mountain the remainder of the month. Total loss of the regiment in the month of June: Commissioned [officers]--missing, 1. Enlisted men--wounded, 3; missing, 2. Total, 6.July 1, marched from Lost Mountain to Howell's Ferry, on the Sweet Water. July 3, sharp skirmishing with the enemy-near the Chattahoochee River. July 4, returned to near Lost Mountain. July 5, passed through, Marietta. July 7, passed to the left flank of the army, near Powell's Ferry. July 20, at railroad bridge. July 22, crossed the Chattahoochee River, skirmishing with enemy three miles south of Peach Tree Creek, on the right flank of our army. July 26, skirmishing. July 27, crossed the Chattahoochee as part of General McCook s force for operations in rear of Atlanta. July 28, re-crossed the river six miles below Campbellton; regiment, detached, proceeded to Campbellton: two and a half miles east of the place, on the Fairburn road, attacked the advance of General Armstrong's division, 2,000 strong, and after a severe fight withdrew, losing Major Paine, commanding regiment, killed; Lieutenant Warren and 9 men killed, wounded, and missing; returned to Marietta. July 31, escorting pontoon train and battery. Lieutenant-Colonel Torrey, commanding Second Cavalry Brigade, was severely wounded and taken prisoner at Newnan, Ga.; H. T. Persons, acting as surgeon of Second Brigade, taken prisoner. Loss of regiment in July: Commissioned [officers]--killed, 1; missing, 3. Enlisted men--killed, 2; wounded, 5; missing, 28. Total, 39.Regiment marched from Marietta to the Sweet Water Creek August 1, remained in that vicinity until the 7th, covering retreat of stragglers of McCook's command. August 7, to the railroad bridge across the Chattahoochee River. Remained there till the 10th, and then marched for Cartersville, arriving on the 12th. Recapitulation of losses: Commissioned [officers]--killed, 1; wounded, 3; missing, 3; total, 7. Enlisted men--killed, 8; wounded, 49; missing, 44; total, 10l. L. M. B. SMITH, Captain, Commanding Regiment. O.R.-- SERIES I--VOLUME XXXVIII/2
NOVEMBER 15-DECEMBER 21, 1864.--The Savannah (Georgia) Campaign. No. 143.--Report of Brig. Gen. Judson Kilpatrick, U. S. Army, commanding Third Cavalry Division.
November 28, 1864.--1 battle-flag of Fourth Georgia Cavalry, captured at Waynesborough, Ga. O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLIV
NOVEMBER 15-DECEMBER 21, 1864.--The Savannah (Georgia) Campaign. No. 3.--Itinerary of the Union Forces, November 1-December 31, 1864 20 th Army Corp- No. 77.--Report of Brig. Gen. Alpheus S. Williams, U. S. Army, commanding Twentieth Army Corps.
December 10.--Marched on the Savannah and Augusta road; found the enemy's entrenched line crossing the road near the Four-Mile Post. After reconnoitering the corps took position in front of the enemy--the left on Savannah River, the right on Georgia Central Railroad. Remained in this position until the 21st, when, the enemy having evacuated, the corps took possession of the city. A small steamer Ida was captured in the Savannah River and burned on the 10th. O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLIV
NOVEMBER 15-DECEMBER 21, 1864.--The Savannah (Georgia) Campaign. No. 85.--Report of Col. Ezra A. Carman, Thirteenth New Jersey Infantry, commanding Second Brigade. Lieut. GEORGE ROBINSON, Actg. Asst. Adjt. Gen., First Division, Twentieth CorpsHDQRS. SECOND BRIG., FIRST DIV., TWENTIETH CORPS, Near Savannah, Ga., December 27, 1864.
A forage party under command of Captain Gildersleeve, One hundred and fiftieth New York Volunteers, this day captured the rebel dispatch steamer Ida on the Savannah River, taking thirteen prisoners, among whom was Colonel Clinch, of General Hardee's staff. The steamer was burned by Captain Gildersleeve, he not being able to hold it on account of the rebel gun-boats on the river. E. A. CARMAN, Colonel, Commanding Brigade. O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLIV
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA (FROM FEBRUARY 1), SOUTH CAROLINA, SOUTHERN GEORGIA, AND EAST FLORIDA, FROM JANUARY 1, 1865, TO MARCH 23, 1865.--#2 SPECIAL ORDERS No. 8. ADJT. INSP. GENERAL'S OFFICE, Richmond, Va., January 11, 1865.
XI. Ten of the eleven companies composing the organization known in the Army of Tennessee as the Fourth Georgia Cavalry (formed upon the basis of the Twenty-third Georgia Battalion) will constitute the Twelfth Regiment Georgia Cavalry, to take effect from the 30th of January, 1865, the date of the organization effected under the orders of General Bragg. The eleventh company will be the subject of assignment to some Georgia battalion or other organization to be designated hereafter. JNO. W. RIELY, Assistant Adjutant-General O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVII/2
Avery as colonel. The regiment, composed in great part of troops that had already seen service, participated in the Chickamauga and Knoxville campaigns; in Wheeler's corps served through the marches and battles of the Atlanta campaign; after the fall of that city remained with Wheeler and shared in his efforts to save as much as possible from the ravages of Sherman's cavalry and bummers. On the 30th of January, 1865, ten companies formed the Twelfth Georgia cavalry, and the extra companies were assigned to duty with other commands. Under its new name it shared in the campaign of the Carolinas.
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA (FROM FEBRUARY 1), SOUTH CAROLINA, SOUTHERN GEORGIA, AND EAST FLORIDA, FROM JANUARY 1, 1865, TO MARCH 23, 1865.--#2 HEADQUARTERS FOURTH GEORGIA CAVALRY, January 17, 1865. Capt. R. F. LAWTON, Assistant Adjutant-General :
CAPTAIN: Your communication of the 10th instant received. I have done as directed in regard to the disposition of the forces under my command. In regard to the troops in the country, there are none but Hood's battalion that are on duty, and I understand that there is but sixty left of them and they badly demoralized. They picket at Fort Barrington, below Doctor Town, and at Beard's Bluff above, on the Altamaha. They have a fragment of a company at Waynesville. Captain Cosby, commanding a detachment engaged in hunting deserters, is now reporting to me with about thirty men. These are all the Confederate troops of whom I have any knowledge in this section of country, except fifteen men belonging to a Mississippi battalion of General Ferguson's regiment [brigade]. Scouts report no enemy this side of the Ogeechee River. I am, captain, respectfully, your obedient servant, JOHN L. HARRIS, Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding. O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVII/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA (FROM FEBRUARY 1), SOUTH CAROLINA, SOUTHERN GEORGIA, AND EAST FLORIDA, FROM JANUARY 1, 1865, TO MARCH 23, 1865.--#3 HEADQUARTERS IVERSON'S DIVISION, January 20, 1865. Lieutenant HUDSON, Acting Assistant Adjutant-General:
LIEUTENANT: I have the honor to state all quiet in my immediate front this morning. No report from Lieutenant-Colonel Harris since my last dispatch. General Ferguson has not reported yet. I have Colonel Hawkins across the Ogeechee till his arrival. Fifty-one negroes, picked up at different times within the last three or four days making their way toward the enemy, have been sent to the rear. Respectfully, your obedient servant, ALFRED IVERSON, Brigadier-General. O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVII/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA (FROM FEBRUARY 1), SOUTH CAROLINA, SOUTHERN GEORGIA, AND EAST FLORIDA, FROM JANUARY 1, 1865, TO MARCH 23, 1865.--#3 HEADQUARTERS FOURTH GEORGIA CAVALRY, January 23, 1865. Capt. R. F. LAWTON, Assistant Adjutant-General:
CAPTAIN: There is no additional news from our scouts. The nearest picket of the enemy is at King's Bridge, on the Ogeechee. Our scouts are kept in front of them. I keep no regular picket near them. If the scouts on the north side of the Ogeechee watch the enemy closely, I do not think he can make a movement without being discovered in time, if my scouts between the Ogeechee and the Cannouchee do their duty well. I am, captain, very respectfully, &c., JOHN L. HARRIS, Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding. O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVII/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA (FROM FEBRUARY 1), SOUTH CAROLINA, SOUTHERN GEORGIA, AND EAST FLORIDA, FROM JANUARY 1, 1865, TO MARCH 23, 1865.--#4 HEADQUARTERS FERGUSON'S BRIGADE, Mount Vernon, Montgomery County, Ga., January 29, 1865. First Lieut. M. G. HUDSON, Aide-de-Camp and Actg. Asst. Adjt. Gen., Wheeler's Corps:
LIEUTENANT: I have the honor respectfully to report that in pursuance of and obedience to paragraph VII, Special Orders, No. 9, from corps headquarters, dated Grahamville, S.C., January 13, 1865, I moved my brigade from Robertsville to Augusta; thence to this point, via Pageley's Bridge on Brier Creek, Fenn's Bridge over the Ogeechee, and Long's Bridge on Williamson's Swamp Creek. This was the only route at all practicable, in consequence of the recent heavy rains and the swollen condition of every river and creek in this portion of the State. It has been very difficult to procure forage and subsistence. On reaching this point, represented by the people above to be abundant, I have been able to get a half ration of corn. Beyond this place in the direction of the Gulf road and toward Savannah there is nothing. The accounts from my scouts and intelligent citizens agree that I cannot subsist one day in any portion of this territory. The Yankees have taken everything from the country between the Ohoopee and Altamaha Rivers and Savannah, extending their foraging expeditions along the Ogeechee to the center of Bulloch County.
Scouts report Lieutenant-Colonel Harris at Nail's Ferry, and General McCoy at railroad bridge; both on the other side of the Altamaha River. There is one company of State militia at Walthourville. This disposition of the troops must have been necessitated by the entire want of forage or subsistence between the Ogeechee and Altamaha south and east of line before mentioned, as, from all accounts, the small company at Walthourville will not be able to subsist where it is.
Finding it impossible to subsist my command or forage my horses along or near the line of operations stated in Special Orders, No. 9, I have determined to move, and will move across the Oconee at Dublin and camp on Turkey Creek, where I can remain several days, until I can hear from you. I will put myself in communication with the troops south of me, and scout the desolate country between this point and Savannah, so that I may be able to ascertain speedily the movement of the enemy and pursue all raiding parties moving west. I omitted to say there is no crossing of the Altamaha below this place at present on account of high water. Citizens report that the railroad below is being torn up to build the road from Thomasville to Albany. Awaiting further orders, I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant, S. W. FERGUSON, Brigadier-General O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVII/2
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA (FROM FEBRUARY 1), SOUTH CAROLINA, SOUTHERN GEORGIA, AND EAST FLORIDA, FROM JANUARY 1, 1865, TO MARCH 23, 1865.--#14 HEADQUARTERS MILITARY DIVISION OF THE WEST, Augusta, March 4, 1865. General G. T. BEAUREGARD, Charlotte, N. C. :
GENERAL: 1 have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 20th ultimo, in relation to the troops and trains at Augusta, on the 27th ultimo. It was brought by Captain Hazzard, not Lieutenant Trenholm, who has not yet reported. I was therefore in the dark in respect to the condition of the army and affairs which Lieutenant Trenholm was charged to communicate. The orders and instructions embraced in your letter have all been carried out. The troops arriving here are being organized and equipped, and would have moved forward, in pursuance to your instructions from Charlotte of the 24th ultimo, to General Hill, received on the 2d instant, but the non-arrival of army trains and stores prevented. The trains are detained at Milledgeville in consequence of the high freshet in the Oconee, which has caused the pontoon bridge to be removed. Every effort is being made to hurry them up, in order that they can move with the troops. Your communication of the 13th ultimo, directing me to report with others of the staff, was not received until the 2d instant. I had made preparations to leave this morning, but last night your orders to General Young of the 27th ultimo were received, by which I am directed to remain here. General Young is preparing to carry out his instructions, but will be delayed for want of pontoon train. This was detained at Macon, in pursuance of orders from Lieutenant-General Taylor and General M. L. Smith. I send telegrams on this subject for your information. In pursuance of your letter of the 24th, orders have been issued to the staff of the Army of Tennessee to report to General Joseph E. Johnston at Charlotte. Major-General Elzey, chief of artillery, will remain here with the light batteries. I would respectfully suggest that it would be well, under existing circumstances, that the larger portion be removed to some interior point, not only on account of safety, but for convenience to forage, &c. After the departure of General Young and the trains and troops of the army Augusta will be uncovered. Nothing will be left but Cumming's small brigade of Georgia Reserves and Browne's Reserves. On the 28th [25th] instant Governor Brown sent a dispatch to General Fry, notifying that he intended withdrawing his militia; and on Sunday, the 26th, without any notification, the militia abandoned the lines and left. I telegraphed Governor Brown on the subject, but received no answer. I send you copy of communication from him to you on this subject. In this state of affairs it would be better to remove the artillery. All the artillery companies left in Mississippi have gone to Mobile, under orders from Lieutenant-General Taylor, except five companies sent to Demopolis. The order for its reorganization General Elzey informs me he did not receive, and was not aware of its existence until I called his attention to it and gave him a copy. The railroad has been completed to Atlanta from West Point, and I have directed Major Hottie to transfer his force to the east of it and work eastwardly, until he meets Captain Grant. Captain Grant reports that he cannot complete the work until the middle of April. The bridge over the Alcony will be finished in ten days. I should be glad to have your views in relation to the amount of stores to be kept on hand in this section, and the best points for their location; what lines of route are most likely to become important, in order that repairs may be looked after. Under existing circumstances, the route from Washington to Abbeville seems to have lost some of its value. The reconnaissance of that route shows the dirt road to be very bad and at present impracticable. I would call your attention to the fact that the gauge of the West Point and Montgomery road is the narrow one. It is highly important that this be remedied. There is no commanding officer at Columbia, and great confusion exists there. Beyond there is no courier line. I have ordered Colonel Rudler to that place as commandant, with instructions to establish a through line. Respectfully, your obedient servant, GEORGE WM. BRENT, Colonel and Assistant Adjutant-General. O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVII/2
JANUARY 1-APRIL 26, 1865.--The Campaign of the Carolinas. No. 145.--Reports of Col. Alfred B. Smith, One hundred and fiftieth New York infantry, of operations January 17-March 24 and April 10-May 24. HDQRS. 150TH REGIMENT NEW YORK VOLUNTEERS, Near Goldsborough, N. C.: March 25, 1865.
SIR: I have the honor, in compliance with circular from brigade headquarters of March 25, 1865, to make the following report of operations during the recent campaign:
- January 17, broke camp at 8.50 a.m.; marched through the city of Savannah and crossed the Savannah River on pontoon bridges to South Carolina shore, marching about ten miles.
- January 18, marched at 2 p.m.; made six miles and encamped on Hardee's plantation.
- January 19, marched at 9 a.m.; made seven miles and encamped at Purysburg.
- January 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, and 25, remained in same camp.
- January 26, moved at 1 p.m.; halted at Rushing's plantation, having made five miles.
- January 27, moved at 9 a.m.; destroyed one cotton press; made seven miles.
- January 28, moved at 7 a.m.; advanced four miles in light marching order on a reconnaissance toward Robertsville; found only a few trees felled across the road and frequent barricades, and half a dozen rebel cavalry, who ran as we approached; ordered and returned to camp at 11.30 a.m., then marched toward Sister's Ferry, on the Grahamville road, which, after marching a short distance, was found impassable, and returned up to the point we made in the morning, having marched fourteen miles. January 29, marched to Robertsville, five miles.
- January 30, 31, and February 1, remained in same camp.
- February 2, marched at 10 a.m. by Steep Bottom Post-Office to Lawtonville, a distance of fifteen miles.
- February 3, moved at 7 a.m. and made Beech Branch, twelve miles; procured an issue of salt meat and flour for the regiment.
- February 4, marched to the left; made about ten miles.
- February 5, marched at 7 a.m.; made twelve miles.
- February 6, marched at 8 a.m.; crossed the Little and Big Salkehatchie Rivers and made about twelve miles.
- February 7, marched at 7 a.m. and struck the railroad one mile and a half east of Graham's Station at 4 p.m., making seven miles.
- February 8, destroyed half a mile of railroad; made two miles and a half; forage party secured 1,200 pounds salt meat, 10 sheep, 7 head of cattle, 100 pounds flour, and 10 bushels sweet potatoes.
- February 9, marched at 8 a.m.; made fifteen miles westerly; one prisoner captured, belonging to Fourth Georgia Cavalry and turned over by Captain Wheeler to First Brigade.
- February 10, destroyed 2,740 feet of railroad, burning the ties and twisting the rails; made two miles. I am, most respectfully, your obedient servant, A. B. SMITH, Lieutenant-Colonel, Commanding 150th New York Volunteers. Capt. J. R. LINDSAY, Acting Assistant Adjutant-General, Second Brigade. O.R.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVII/1
CONFEDERATE CORRESPONDENCE, ORDERS, AND RETURNS RELATING TO OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA (FROM FEBRUARY 1), SOUTH CAROLINA, SOUTHERN GEORGIA, AND EAST FLORIDA, FROM JANUARY 1, 1865, TO MARCH 23, 1865.--#9 AUGUSTA, GA., February 15, 1865
Captain HAZZARD: If you can be useful in harassing the Yankees and stopping marauding remain until the 20th. I wish you by all means to keep us constantly apprised of any movement of the Yankees this way by the plank road from Edgefield. Respectfully, D. H. HILL, Major-General. OR.--SERIES I--VOLUME XLVII/2