with unabated energy and zeal with the gunboats within the river, which was filled with torpedoes.
The work of dragging for them was painfully slow and laborious.
The army was pressing onward also on both banks of the river to Wilmington
The march of General Sherman Lad
been delayed by rains; a considerable force under Bragg
opposed the progress of the comparatively small one under General Terry
, who could well afford to move cautiously, as the end was inevitable and could not be far off.
For the reduction of Wilmington General Schofield
advanced from Smithville
on the 17th of February.
At the same time Admiral Porter
attacked Fort Anderson
, situated on the river, nearly half way to Wilmington
, the monitor Montauk
close to the works, and the gunboats Pawtuxet
, and Pequot
at some distance; the river had been previously dragged for torpedoes.
The attacking force was limited, by reason of the difficulty of having more vessels in position.
The following day (18th), in order to get more batteries to bear, at 8 A. M. the monitor Montauk
led, followed by the Mackinaw
, Lenapee, Unadilla
, Pawtuxet, Osceola
, Shawmut, Seneca
, Chippewa, and Little Ada. They anchored in position and maintained a heavy fire during the day. At 3 P. M. the fort no longer replied, but the fire was maintained by the fleet until after dark, and throughout the night with diminished intensity.
Aware that General Schofield
was on the point of cutting off their retreat, the garrison abandoned the work during the night, carrying away six field pieces.
Ten heavy guns were found in the fort.
The casualties during the day in the attacking force were 3 killed and 4 wounded.
On the 20th and 21st the boats of the fleet were employed