Today in History:

90 Series I Volume XXXV-I Serial 65 - Olustee Part I

Page 90 S.C.,FLA., AND ON THE GA. COAST. Chapter XLVII.

twenty boats (pontoons and metallic), the right of the regiment to embark in the lightest-draught boats, as they were to take the lead. Colonel John B. Conyngham was assigned the first boat division, consisting of the three right companies of the Fifty-second Pennsylvania Volunteers (A, F, and D). They were to embark in four boats, Nos.1,2,3, and 4; First Lieutenant N. P. Farr commanding No. 1, to which the guide was assigned; No. 2, Captain T. B. Camp; No. 3, Lieutenant-Colonel Conyngham; No. 4, First Lieutenant James G. Stevens. The four center companies (I, C, H, and E) formed the second boat division, under the command of Colonel Hoyt; No. 5, commanded by Captain Harry H. Jenks, Company I; No. 6, First Lieutenant Thomas E. Evans, Company I; No. 7, Captain W. S. Chatham, Company C; No. 8, First Lieutenant William V. Hollingsworth, Company C; No. 9, Captain John B. Fish, Company H; No. 10, Captain H. D. Weed, Company E. These boats were to immediately follow the preceding ones, to which they were to be attached by ropes, but this part of the arrangement was abandoned. The three left companies (K, G, and B) formed the third boat division, and were under my command; No. 11, Lieutenant David Moses, Company K; No. 12, Sergeant Samson, Company K; No. 13, Sergeant Kenyon, Company E; No. 14, Captain N. Pierson, Company G; No. 15, Second Lieutenant Burr, Company B; No. 16, Captain R. W. Bannatyne, Company B; No. 17 being the boat assigned to me; 40 artillerists, Third Rhode Island Heavy Artillery, which were assigned to Nos.18 and 19, Captain Churchill and Lieutenant Bible; Colonel Hoyt having a light boat, No. 20.

Some of these boats were found to be unfit for use; consequently some changes were made, and there was not found transportation sufficient for a considerable portion of my boat division.

I was directed by Colonel Hoyt, after embarking my boat division, to proceed immediately to Paine's Dock, which I did. The tide being low I got stuck in the creek and was obliged to get out in order to get the boat off. Some time after arriving at Paine's Wharf the boats all started for Cumming's Point. I endeavored to keep my division together.

Soon after leaving Paine's Dock Colonel Hoyt ran his boat alongside of mine and informed me that any boats were getting in the advance and that they would get fast in the channel;by halting, threw my boats out of order upon reaching the point from which we were to start across. The expedition frequently halted, being uncertain as to its course. My boat division was to land immediately after the others and to run boats between theirs.

At early daylight we found ourselves in front of Fort Simkins and on the left-hand side of the bar. The first intimation that I had of any bar being there was, which pulling well to the right to form my line of battle as directed, I ran upon this bar and found some difficulty in getting off. Other boats jamming into the channel obliged my boat to pass to the rear in getting off. The boats of both regiments were mixed together considerably. After getting off the bar I endeavored to get to the front in order to land on the beach, but found it impossible, as the channel was full of boats that were not moving on. I then asked my cockswain if he could get ashore from the marsh; he replied that it was impossible. Previous to this the enemy had discovered the advance boats, fired a signal gun, and opened upon the boats with musketry, grape, and canister, causing

Page 90 S.C.,FLA., AND ON THE GA. COAST. Chapter XLVII.