heavy guns of the fleet again opened on that part of the fort, and made it necessary for the Confederates
to look to their safety.
In the meantime, the National
troops having gained the parapets on their front, had carried seven of the traverses most to the west, without serious loss, attacked the traverses more toward the sea, one after the other, and the vessels farthest in, especially the Ironsides
and the monitors, resumed a fire of heavy shells between the traverses in advance of the troops, as they carried traverse after traverse, most obstinately defended as they were by the Confederates
But the odds were against them.
They had to face as gallant men pressing onward as the Confederate
defenders, who were flanked by a destructive fire of heavy shells; they had, in fact, either to abandon traverse after traverse or be killed where they stood.
By nightfall the bastion was carried and some of the traverses on the sea face.
As opportunity offered, officers and men of the navy who had been held fast under their imperfect cover, found their way around the palisades into the army lines or went within them higher up. Lieutenant Cushing
, who was wounded, organized the sailors and took charge of a line of breastworks to protect the rear from a Confederate attack from the north along the sandspit, and thus released additional troops, who joined those already within the fort.
But while the battle raged hot in the fort and its defenders looked for relief from Hoke
's division along the peninsula, and have upbraided General Bragg
because it did not advance, the half dozen gunboats placed close along the beach north of General Terry
's lines, defended by General Paine
's brigade, about 4 P. M. saw from their mast-heads Hoke
's skirmish line advancing, and with shells exerted a restraining influence.
Had assaulting columns followed the