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Doc. 165.-the Sabine pass expedition.


Congratulatory order from Gen. Magruder.1

headquarters District of Texas, New-Mexico, and Arizona, Houston, Tex., Sept. 9, 1863.
General orders, no.--:

I. The Major-General Commanding has the satisfaction of announcing to.the army a brilliant victory, won by the little garrison of Sabine Pass against the fleet of the enemy. Attacked by five gunboats, the fort, mounting but three guns of small calibre, and manned by the Davis Guards, Lieutenant R. M. Dowling, assisted by Lieutenant Smith, of the engineers, supported by about two hundred men — the whole under command of Captain F. H. Odium-steadily resisted their fire, and at last forced the surrender of the two gunboats Clifton and Sachem, badly crippling another, which, with the others, escaped over the bar. The result of this gallant achievement is the capture of two fine gunboats, fifteen heavy guns, over two hundred prisoners, among them the Commodore of the fleet, and over fifty of the enemy killed and wounded, while not a man was lost on our side or a gun injured.

II. The enemy's fleet, with his land forces, is still off the coast, no doubt intending a landing at the first favorable moment. He may endeavor to retrieve his losses at Sabine by an attack upon the works at other points on the coast. Should this be the case, the Major-General Commanding confidently expects to receive from his troops at those points as cheering a report as that which he now communicates to the army from the defenders of Sabine.

III. The result of the engagement had with the enemy's fleet on the coast of Texas proves that true pluck and resolution are qualities which make up for disparity of metal and numbers; and that no position, defended with determination, can be carried by the enemy's gunboats alone. Should any of the forts on the coast, or the forces on land, be attacked, the troops need but remember the success of their comrades at Sabine, emulate their courage and skill, and victory will be the result.

By command of

Major-General J. Bankhead Magruder. Edmund B. Turner, A. A. General. Official: H. A. Pratt, A. A. General. Headquarters Department Trans-Mississippi, Shreveport, La., Sept. 13, 1863.
[499]

1 see Dec. 125, page 425, ante.

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Edmund B. Turner (1)
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John Bankhead Magruder (1)
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