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[623] judgment; and yet some of our men expended eighty rounds of cartridges in the battle. The close vicinity of the ordnance train under its energetic chief, Captain W. W. Elliott, enabled me to keep up the supply.

I beg to express my admiration of the remarkable courage and tenacity with which the troops held their ground. The announcement of my determination to maintain my position until reinforcements arrived seemed to fix them to the spot with unconquerable resolution.

The rapid and continuous volleys of the enemy's musketry were only intermitted while fresh troops were brought up and while those engaged retired.

The Beaufort volunteer artillery fought with great courage, and their pieces were admirably served. Captain Stephen Elliott, whose name is identified with the history of the defence of this coast by many a daring exploit, behaved with his accustomed coolness, skill, and determination.

Captain Trenholm, in command of the cavalry, again exhibited high qualities as a soldier on the same ground where he had won his first laurels.

Captain Edwards, Company “B,” First battalion cavalry, showed good conduct in the command of his company.

Lieutenant Walker, commanding the Rutledge Mounted Riflemen, displayed judgment and daring. His company were as steady as veterans, using their rifles with great precision and effect.

When the battle was hottest I ordered Lieutenant Walker to take a squad of his men and assist the Beaufort artillery to remove one of their pieces further to the rear. This was most gallantly done under a severe fire.

Lieutenant Massie, of the Nelson Light Artillery, was active and energetic in the service of his guns.

Captain Rutledge, of the Charleston Light dragoons, was cool and collected in both fights. His gallant corps was held in reserve, and when they took up their position, came with a most inspiriting cheer, which the men engaged returned, thus giving the impression to the enemy of decided reinforcements.

The government is greatly indebted to Captain Sligh and his brave battalion for their timely aid. Captain Sligh behaved with marked coolness and courage. Captain1--------and Lieutenant2--------who came immediately under my notice, showed zeal and bravery. I have again to commend the conduct of Lieutenant R. M. Skinner, acting adjutant of the First battallion cavalry. He was among the foremost on the field until disable by a severe wound in the arm.

Enclosed is Colonel Colcocke's report of the engagement at Coosawhatchie; it will be seen that his command behaved with spirit and success. The most important point to defend was the raiload bridge over the Coosawhatchie river. From this the enemy were very quickly driven by our artillery fire, but they succeeded in penetrating to a point on the railroad west of the bridge, before the cavalry arrived; one or two rails only being torn up and the telegraph wire cut, the damage was repaired in a few minutes. After the enemy had retired to their gunboats, the cavalry under Lieutenant-Colonel Johnson, fired with effect upon their crowded decks.

To the following gentlemen, acting as my personal staff, I desire to express my thanks for their zeal, gallantry, and intelligent discharge of duty: Captain Hartstene, C. S. N., Naval Aid, Captain W. W. Elliott, Ordnance Officer, Captain George P. Elliott, Captain John H. Screven, Corporal D. Walker, and privates Tripp and Martin, of the Rutledge Mounted Riflemen, and private E. B. Bell, of the Seventeenth Battalion, S. C. V. Privates F. F. Davant and Ion Simmons, of the Charleston Light Dragoons, had their horses shot, and afterwards fought with their company on foot.

My Aid, Mr. R. M. Fuller, rendered valuable service by the intelligent discharge of his duty at the telegraph office. The Messrs. Cuthbert, father and son, gave me useful assistance. Privates Tripp and Bell were seriously, and private Martin slightly wounded. Captain Hartstene's horse was wounded, and Captain Walker's killed.

The judgment, coolness, and gallantry displayed by Captain Hartstene, were as conspicuous on land as he has hitherto shown on sea. I must express my indebtedness to Mr. Buck-halter of the Charleston and Savannah Railroad, for valuable services, and for the resolution and courage with which he urged a train filled with troops, after the engineer had been killed, through an ambuscade of the enemy to Coosa-whatchie.

When the engagement was over, ample reinforcements arrived from Savannah and Charleston. The enemy's gunboats remained in a commanding position off Mackay's Point on the twenty-third, covering their embarkation. My force could not be moved nearer than two miles without being exposed to a destructive fire. A detachment of cavalry under Captain Trenholm closely watched their operations, occasionally saluted by their shells.

On the night of the twenty-third, Sergeant Robinsons of the Rutledge Mounted Riflemen, made a reconnoissance up to the extreme point, and discovered that the enemy had abandoned the main land. Early on the morning of the twenty-fourth, their gunboats disappeared. I enclose a list of the casualties, and a sketch of the positions at which the different conflicts took place.

I have the honor to be,

Very respectfully,

Your obedient servant,

W. S. Walker. Brigadier-General, commanding.

1 The names of these officers, though repeatedly requested, have not yet been learned.

2 The commanding officer of the battalion has received instructions to forward them to department headquarters.

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