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[455] own sword, should be extended to him. His defence I would remark, was continued until almost the latest limit possible; for a few hours more of our fire, would, to all appearance, have sufficed for the destruction of the magazine and a larger portion of the Fort, while another day would have unavoidably placed the garrison at the mercy of a storming column from our command.

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant.

H. W. Benham, Brigadier-General Commanding Northern District, Department of the South.


General Gilmore's report.

headquarters, Fort Pulaski, Ga., April 12, 1862.
Lieut. A. B. Ely, Acting Assistant Adjutant-General, Northern District, Department of the South:
sir: I have the honor to report that several batteries established on Tybee Island, to operate against Fort Pulaski, opened fire on the morning of the tenth inst., at a quarter-past eight o'clock, commencing with the thirteen-inch mortars.

When the range of these pieces had been approximately obtained, by the use of signals, the other batteries opened in the order previously prescribed in “General orders, no. Seventeen,” from these headquarters, hereunto appended, as part of this report, so that by half-past 9 o'clock all our batteries--eleven in number — had commenced their work.

The breaching batteries opened at half-past 9 o'clock. With the exception of four ten-inch columbiads, dismounted at the outset by their own recoil, in consequence of their having been supplied pintles, and from very serious defects in the wrought-iron chapis, which will be noticed more fully in my detailed report, all the pieces were served through the day.

With few exceptions, strict regard was paid to the instructions laid down in the order regulating the rapidity and direction of the fire. At dark all the pieces ceased firing, except the thirteen-inch mortars, one ten-inch mortar, and one thirty-pound Parrott, which were served through the night at intervals of twenty minutes for each piece.

The only plainly perceptible result of this cannonade of ten and a half hours duration, the breaching batteries having been served but nine and a half hours, was the commencement of a breach in the easterly half of the pancoupe connecting the south and south-east faces, and in that portion of the-south-east face spanned by the two casemates adjacent to the pancoupe. The breach had been ordered in this portion of the scarp so as to take in reverse, through the opening, the magazine located in the angle formed by the gorge and north face.

Two of the barbette guns of the Fort have been disabled, and three casemate guns silenced. The enemy served both tiers of guns briskly through-out the day, but without injury to the materiel or personnel of our batteries.

The result from the mortar-batteries was not at all satisfactory, notwithstanding the care and skill with which the pieces were served.

On the morning of the eleventh our batteries again opened a little after sunrise, with decided effect, the Fort returning a heavy and well-directed fire from its barbette and casemate guns. The breach was rapidly enlarged. At the expiration of three hours the entire casemate next the pancoupe had been opened, and by eleven o'clock the one adjacent to it was in a similar condition. Directions were then given to train the guns upon the third embrasure, upon which the breaching batteries were operating with effect, when the Fort hoisted the white flag. This occurred at two o'clock P. M.

The formalities of visiting the Fort, receiving the surrender and occupying it with our. troops, consumed the balance of the afternoon and evening.

I cannot indulge in detail, however interesting and instructive, in this hasty and preliminary report; but the pleasing duty of acknowledging the services of the officers and men under my command, during the laborious and fatiguing preliminaries for opening fire, as well as during the action, I do not feel at liberty to defer.

The labor of landing the heaviest ordnance, with large supplies of ordnance stores, upon an open and exposed beach, remarkable for its heavy surf, taking advantage of the tide day and night the transportation of these articles to the advanced batteries under cover of night; the erection of seven of the eleven batteries in plain view of Fort Pulaski, and under its fire; the construction upon marshy ground in the night-time exclusively of nearly one mile of causeway, resting on fascines and brushwood; the difficult task of hauling the guns, carriages and chapis to their positions, in the dark, over a narrow road, bordered by marsh, by the labor of the men alone, (the advance being two and a half miles from the landing;) the indomitable perseverance and cheerful deportment of the officers and men under the frequent discouragement of breaking down and miring in the swamp, are services to the cause and country which I do not feel at liberty to leave unrecorded. An idea of the immense labor expended in transporting the ordnance can be gained from the fact that two hundred and fifty men could hardly move a thirteen-inch mortar, loaded, on a sling-cart. Another circumstance deserving especial mention, is, that twenty-two of the thirty-six pieces comprised in the batteries were served during the action by the troops who had performed the fatiguing labors to which I have referred above. They received all their instructions in gunnery, at such odd times as they could be spared from other duty, during the week preceding the action.

The troops which participated in all the heavy labor, were the Forty-sixth New-York Volunteers, Col. Rudolph Rosa; the Seventh Connecticut volunteers, Col. Alfred H. Terry; two companies of the New-York Volunteer Engineers (Capt. Graef and Lieut. Brooks) under command of Lieut.-Col.


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