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[319] under Colonel Colcock, to unite with those now in front of Grahamville and near Coosawhatchie and Pocotaligo and Kirk's squadron, together with the section of horse artillery attached to the 3d South Carolina Cavalry.

Endeavor to bring and keep together, as far as practicable, the troops of the same organization.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

A. R. Chisolm, A. D. C.

While the foregoing communication was being penned this telegram was forwarded to Richmond:

General Hardee reports that about fifteen hundred of the enemy's infantry crossed yesterday Savannah River, from Argyle Island to Izard's plantation. Wheeler holds them in check. General Hardee will probably evacuate Savannah to-night. His first defensive line will be in rear of the Combahee. Wheeler's cavalry will guard country thence to the Savannah River. All quiet here. No report from General Hood since 28th of November.


He now ordered that the Savannah River Railroad bridge and trestle-work on the Carolina side should be immediately and thoroughly destroyed, and that Generals Wheeler and Taliaferro should be instructed to that effect. Through Captain Courtney, at Hardeeville, he also communicated with Commodore Hunter, and pointed out the necessity of commanding the Savannah River by his gunboat, as long as possible, from the enemy's battery to a point as far up the stream as navigation would permit.

During the night of the 20th, and in strict obedience to General Beauregard's instructions, Savannah was successfully evacuated. President Davis was informed of the fact as follows:

Pocotaligo, S. C., Dec. 21st, 1864.
General Hardee reports to-day from Hardeeville that evacuation of Savannah, as instructed by me,1 was successfully accomplished last night. All the light artillery and most of the stores and munitions were brought off. The heavy guns were spiked and otherwise disabled. Line of defence behind Combahee River will be taken as soon as possible.


On the same day he sent this telegram to General Hardee:

Pocotaligo, S. C., Dec. 21st, 1864.
I congratulate you on the success of the evacuation. You can delay


1 See, in Appendix, Colonel Clarke's letters to General Beauregard.

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