defense of a line established behind it. Nevertheless, it was determined to get a line across at this place, and Paine's division, followed by two of Ames's brigade, made their way through.
The night was very dark, much of the ground was a marsh, and illy adapted to the construction of works, and the distance was found to be too great to be properly defended by the troops which could be spared from the direct attack upon the fort.
It was not until 9 o'clock P. M. that Paine succeeded in reaching the river.
The ground, still nearer the fort, was then reconnoitered and found to be much better adapted to our purposes; accordingly, the troops were withdrawn from their last position, and established on a line about two miles from the work.
They reached this final position at 2 o'clock A. M. of the 14th instant.
Tools were immediately brought up, and entrenchments were commenced.
At 8 o'clock a good breastwork, reaching from the river to the sea, and partially covered by abattis, had been constructed, and was in a defensible condition.
It was much improved afterward, but from this time our foothold on the peninsula was secured.
On learning this I put the command in motion, and ordered the enemy dislodged, if it was at all practicable.
General Hoke and his brigadiers made a close reconnoissance, and expressed to me the opinion that their troops were unequal to the task.
I moved forward with them, and made a close examination, and after a conference confirmed their opinion, and decided not to attack.
This line was held by Paine
's division and Abbott
's brigade, all colored troops, and numbering less than Hoke
The enemy had landed without artillery, and not even a general officer brought a horse.
While General Terry
Early in the morning of the 14th, the landing of the artillery was commenced, and by sunset all the light guns were gotton on shore.
During the following night they were placed on the line, most of them near the river, where the enemy, in case he should attack us, would be least exposed to the fire of the gunboats.
As some of these guns engaged the steamer Chicamauga
, in full view of the General
's camp, it is hard to understand his ignorance of their presence on the beach.
The letter proceeds:
Believing myself that Grant's army could not storm and carry the fort, if it was defended, I felt perfect confidence that we were not only