terribly harassed by the enemy's mortar shells which were dropped into the fort, one every five minutes. A fiercer attack began at daybreak of the second day, especially upon the southeast angle, where the fire of the rifled cannon was concentrated to breach the walls of the fort.
As General Hunter
reported: ‘The result of this bombardment must cause, I am convinced, a change in the construction of fortifications as radical as that foreshadowed in naval architecture by the conflict between the Monitor
No works of stone or brick can resist the impact of rifled artillery of heavy caliber.’
The solid walls of the old fort built for war of another sort crumbled like the Congress
and the Cumberland
under the shot of the Virginia
‘Two casemates were opened to an aggregate width of thirty feet, the scarp wall was battered down in front of three casemate piers, and the adjacent wall on each side was so badly shattered that a few hours' firing would have doubled the width of practicable breach, a ramp of debris reaching to the foot of the counterscarp.
In repairing the work subsequently, 100 linear feet of wall had to be rebuilt.’
Corporal Law of the Phoenix Riflemen
, stationed at Thunderbolt
, had taken a signal man to the fort on the night of the 10th, and leaving after the flag was lowered, carried the news to Savannah
At the close of the fight all the parapet guns were dismounted except three, two 10-inch columbiads, known as ‘Beauregard
’ and ‘Jeff Davis
’ (but one of which bore on the island), and a rifle cannon.
Every casemate gun in the southeast section of the fort, from No. 7 to No. 13, including all that could be brought to bear upon the enemy's batteries except one, was dismounted, and the casemate walls breached in almost every instance to the top of the arch, say between five and six feet in width.
The moat outside was so filled with brick and mortar that one could have passed over dry shod.
The officers' quarters were torn to pieces, the bomb-proof timbers scattered in every