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[90] December 13th, I joined Sherman, and taking with me a few members of my staff we went down the left bank of the Ogeechee as far as Dr. Cheve's rice mill. On the roof, which was but little inclined, our signal officers had secured a good position, and were in communication with Hazen's signal officers near McAllister at the time of our arrival. The battery of DeGress had preceded us to the rice mill and taken a position where the commander thought he could reach the fort with his projectiles.

His guns were of large size — the twenty-pounder-Parrott. The distance appeared to be three miles. DeGress's firing could not do much damage, but was a diversion, and had for its main object to draw the attention of the fleet. For hours we watched all the operations as well as we could. The signal telescope helped us to an occasional revelation, which kept down Sherman's impatience. About noon the cannon of McAllister commenced slowly firing toward the land, and shortly we could see puffs of smoke, which indicated what Hazen's skirmishers were doing. A little later we caught sight of a steamer in the offing below the fort. It was near the bay or broad mouth of the Ogeechee.

Still later in the afternoon our signal communication was perfected and connected with Hazen himself. He said he had invested the fort already. He had also caught sight of the steamer below. Sherman's answering signal emphasized the importance of carrying the fort by assault that very day. When the steamer was near enough it drew the fire of the fort .upon itself. Shortly after this, Captain McClintock and Lieutenant Sampson, our signal officers, descried the moving flag. They talked with the vessel, which

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