Today in History:

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

Page 716 S.C. AND GA. COASTS, AND IN MID. AND E. FLA. Chapter XL.

trie and the batteries on that island. They kept up a very severe fire for several hours, our batteries replying promptly. Yesterday morning a monitor was evidently aground near Morris Island. On reporting the fact, Fort Moultrie opened on her, hitting her effectively at least twice. Her deck was 6 feet above the water-line, leaving her sides exposed. Shell Point Battery also fired on her. It is to be regretted that our fire was not more general and continuous. At high water in the afternoon she got off. In the engagement of the fleet with Fort Moultrie the monitors were frequently struck, and the Ironside had her deck hit twice, one of the shots tearing away a large portion of her upper bulwarks. She lay alongside of a transport all the afternoon, evidently undergoing repairs.*

* * * * * *

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Major Artillery, Provisional Army C. S., Commanding.

Captain W. F. NANCE,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

Numbers 3. Report of Colonel William Butler, Third South Carolina Artillery, commanding Artillery on Sullivan's Island.

HEADQUARTERS ARTILLERY, Sullivan's Island, September 12, 1863.

SIR: I have the honor to make the following report of the action between the batteries on this island and the iron-clad fleet of the enemy on the 7th and 8th of this month:

On the afternoon of the 7th, about 6 o'clock, five monitors and the frigate Ironside engaged the batteries until after dark, resulting only in 1 casualty at our batteries.

First Lieutenant E. A. Erwin was killed by a shell at Beauregard Battery. Lieutenant Erwin had just returned from service at Morris Island and escaped unhurt to meet death at a less exposed position. He was more than ordinarily intelligent, brave, and conscientious. The regiment has lost in him one of its best officers.

The Ironside continued to fire an occasional shot, after we had ceased firing, until about 9 p. m. It was, however, so dark that the vessels could not be seen.

On the morning of the 8th, one of the monitors, supposed to be the Weehawken, which had the day previous taken a position very near the beach of Morris Island, in the channel leading to Cumming's Point, nearly opposite to Fort moultrie, was observed to show so much of her hull as to lead to the belief that the boat was aground. I received also, early in the morning, a dispatch form Major Elliott, commanding Fort Sumter, giving his belief that the boat was aground and could be destroyed. Learning from a conversation with General Clingman, commanding Sullivan's Island, that it would meet with his sanction, I directed a slow fire to be opened upon the monitor from the treble-banded Brooke gun and 10-inch columbiads; I think with some effect. The fire was returned, and about 9 a. m.


*For portion here omitted, see Boat Attack on Fort Sumter, p. 725.


Page 716 S.C. AND GA. COASTS, AND IN MID. AND E. FLA. Chapter XL.