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Chapter 33:


In order to form a correct opinion of the precise condition of Fort Sumter after the bombardment (of which a description was given in the preceding chapter), based on Colonel Rhett's and the Engineers' reports, the following order, on the 24th of August, was forwarded to Colonel Harris:

Colonel,—General Beauregard directs that you proceed immediately to Fort Sumter (together with Colonel Gilmer, if agreeable to him), to confer with Colonel Rhett, his Chief of Artillery, and Lieutenant Johnson, Engineers, to report upon the defences of the place and the advisability of abandoning the work. In attempting to reach the fort the General desires that a proper regard should be had to your own safety. You must not undertake the trip, if too dangerous.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

Colonels Gilmer and Harris complied with these instructions,

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