Today in History:

96 Series I Volume XXVIII-I Serial 46 - Ft. Sumter - Ft. Wagner Part I

Page 96 S. C. AND GA. COASTS, AND IN MID. AND E FLA. Chapter XL.

32nd. Should it fall, will it not be due entirely, first to the want of troops on the 10th of July last, and then of labor?

Respectfully, your obedient servant,


General, Commanding.

N. B.- Battery Wagner was located by General Pemberton, and nearly finished when I arrived here in September, 1862. I strengthened it greatly by adding three heavy guns to its face, where it had none; also by traverses between its land guns, bomb-proofs, and closing its gorge, &c. I then located and built Battery Gregg at Cumming's Point, where I always intended, whenever practicable, to put a strong work, well armed, if the guns could be had. A good work southeast of Morris Island was also contemplated, with advanced rifle-pits, and a battery for a few field guns, in embrasure,and well traversed.


Brigadier General THOMAS JORDAN,

Chief of Staff, &c.:

GENERAL: In answer to the letter of General Beauregard's of yesterday, I beg to say that I fear it will more time than General Beauregard might desire, for me to make a report which might be considered a full and detailed report of the circumstances which took place during the several months preceding the attack on Morris Island. I will, however, proceed to answer his interrogations as fully as possible, and make up any deficiencies when time is allowed.

To the 1st question. I would answer that the presence of the enemy on Folly and Little Folly Islands was known from the time that he landed, just before the attack of the 7th of April. His movements were ascertained by means of observations from Long, Battery, Black, and Morris Islands, and reported upon almost daily. The consisted for some weeks in throwing up defensive works on Folly. The force was variously estimated at from three to six regiments, and, his defensive operations progressed, his works across the neck of Folly were plainly observed and reported upon. They were about 3,000 yards from Light-House Inlet.

To the 2nd question. In the early part of March last, the commanding general, with me, visited Morris Island, and then determined and ordered the location of five guns, four shells guns and one rifled 24-pounder, in detached batteries, to sweep the beach and crossing to Morris Island from Little Folly. Some time afterward, it was determined to locate a battery in the marsh at the mouths of Vincent's Creek, to flank Morris Island in front of Wagner. It was also intended to place a battery on Black Island, to flank the crossing of Light-House Inlet. The battery at Vincent's Creek was to have two or three guns of long range. A communication from James to Morris Island was also ordered.

To the 3rd interrogatory. I would state that these operations being under the engineer department, and in no way under my charge, I can only give my opinions. Some reasons why they were not completed were alluded to in my correspondence with the headquarters of the department of the 24th of May, 6th and 14th of June, and

Page 96 S. C. AND GA. COASTS, AND IN MID. AND E FLA. Chapter XL.