On the 6th it was still uncertain whether the enemy, after reaching Branchville
, would attempt to strike Augusta
, or Charleston
He was, no doubt, inclined to move on the two last at once, and our force was insufficient to check his progress.
He was advancing upon the Charleston Railroad, General Wheeler
striving to get between him and Augusta
, and having all bridges below Holman's Bridge destroyed.
The following telegram from General Beauregard
to General Cooper
, dated Augusta., February 8th, 1865, describes the situation then existing:
Enemy cut railroad to Charleston yesterday (the 7th) near Blackville.
Lee's corps is in position on south fork of Edisto, protecting approaches to Columbia.
Head of Cheatham's corps arrived here last night.
McLaws's division is at and about Branchville.
I shall leave here to-morrow for Columbia.
Upon reaching Columbia
, about noon on the 10th, General Beauregard
immediately telegraphed General Hardee
advising the concentration of his forces from the Combahee
line to a line behind the Edisto
, so as to shorten it as much as possible.
On the day following, in answer to General Hardee
, who had informed him of the crossing of the enemy to James Island
in front of his works, General Beauregard
forwarded the following telegram: