its exposed barbette guns are soon disabled and the gunners driven to cover; whereas, in detached batteries, which mutually support each other, those not immediately under fire can be worked at leisure and with accuracy.
One gun ashore, well protected, is equivalent to many guns afloat, and the advantage is certain to be on the side of the fire of the detached batteries, especially when guarded against a land attack by a proper supporting force.
Captain John Randolph Hamilton
, of Charleston
, an ex-officer of the United States navy, had constructed a floating battery, originally of rough materials, and so clumsy and ungainly in appearance as to be criticised by those who first examined it. General Beauregard
being directly applied to by the inventor, and approving of his design, procured for him the iron plating necessary for the completion of his work.
Early in April it was ready for use, and was removed to the western extremity of Sullivan's Island
, where it was placed in position, so as to deliver a destructive fire upon the postern entrance of the fort facing the city, a point which could not be effectively bombarded from any other battery.
An iron-clad land battery was also constructed, at that time, by C. H. Stevens
, of Charleston
, who afterwards became a brigadier-general in the Confederate army, and was killed at the battle of Chickamauga
It consisted of heavy timbers overlaid with railroad iron
, so fitted together as to present a smooth inclined surface, to be properly greased when ready for action.
Its heavy guns, three in number, were fired through embrasures supplied with strong iron shutters.
likewise approved of Mr. Stevens
's plan, and added to it such suggestions as his engineering experience justified.
This battery was erected at Cummings's Point
, only thirteen hundred yards from Fort Sumter
Both Captain Hamilton
's and Mr. Steven
's batteries proved the wisdom of their inventors, and fully met General Beauregard
They were, in fact, the first experiments from which sprang all iron-clad war vessels and land batteries in the United States
, and to them may be attributed most of the important changes and improvements since made in naval architecture and armaments.
‘On the 6th of April,’ says General Doubleday
, in his ‘Reminiscences,’ ‘Beauregard
restricted our marketing to two days in the week.
On the 7th it was wholly cut off, and we noticed ’