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‘ [90] not equal to the soldierly qualities of the troops engaged. There appears to have been a lack of foresight in the preparations.’ This lack was certainly a very familiar thing in the Department of the South, where, in a most intricate and peculiar country, expeditions have been repeatedly sent out without the slightest previous investigation and wholly without knowledge of the localities,—attempting to navigate unnavigable streams and to cross bayous of impassable mud,—and this when opposed to an enemy that knew every by-path and held interior lines. On November 30 the 55th Mass. (Colonel Hartwell) lost thirty-one killed and thirty-eight wounded. The list of killed in this battle included Lieut. David Reid of Boston, who had had a curious sense of certainty of his own death, yet ‘met his death in the forefront of battle, his body lying in advance of the artillery pieces until brought back.’1

The 55th was again under fire, with slight loss, at Deveaux Neck, S. C., Dec. 9, 1864, and without loss at James Island, S. C., Feb. 10, 1865; also the 54th at Boykin's Mills, S. C., April 18, and at Swift Creek the following day, losing six men in these engagements, which were the last battles of the war in which Massachusetts troops took serious part. They occurred in connection with what was called ‘Potter's Raid,’ conducted by Gen. E. E. Potter under General Sherman's orders, the object being to reach and destroy a vast amount of rolling stock on a railway already destroyed by him. The raid included the 54th and 55th Mass. infantries and a detachment of the 4th Mass. Cavalry, and was put to an end by the appearance of a flag of truce announcing an armistice between Sherman and Johnston.

It may be proper to refer again to a fact already mentioned, that the first regiment of freed slaves formed during the war was formed of South Carolina and Florida recruits (volunteers) by Brig.-Gen. Rufus Saxton, military governor of the Department of the South,—he being a Massachusetts man, —and that its organization was intrusted to another Massachusetts man, Col. T. W. Higginson. The surgeon and first assistant surgeon, the chaplain, a captain and several lieutenants were also from Massachusetts. The headquarters of this regiment were at Beaufort, S. C. It did a large amount of duty as advanced picket, and conducted, with the co-operation of the navy, three important expeditions into the interior, ascending at different times, for various purposes, the St. Mary's, the St. John's and the South

1 Emilio's 54th Mass., pp. 251, 252.

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