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[281] at the sally port to join the Columbiad in pouring grape and canister into their ranks, I held in reserve the infantry fire. Whiting stood upon the parapet inspiring those around him. The sailors and marines reached the berme and some sprang up the slope, but a murderous fire greeted them and swept them down. Volley after volley was poured into their faltering ranks by cool, determined men, and in half an hour several hundred dead and wounded lay at the foot of the bastion. The heroic bravery of their officers, twenty-one of whom were killed and wounded, could not restrain the men from panic and retreat, and with small loss to ourselves, we witnessed what had never been seen before, a disorderly rout of American sailors and marines. But it was a Pyrrhus victory. That magnificent charge of the American navy upon the centre of our works, enabled the army to effect a lodgment on our left with comparatively small loss.

As our shouts of triumph went up at the retreat of the naval forces, I turned to look at our left and saw, to my amazement, several Federal battle flags upon our ramparts. General Whiting saw them at the same moment, and calling on those around him to pull down those flags and drive the enemy from the works, rushed towards them, followed by the men on the parapet. It was in this charge that the fearless Lieutenant Williford was slain.

In order to make an immediate reconnoissance of the position of the enemy, I rushed through the sally port and outside the work, and witnessed a fierce hand to hand conflict for the possession of the fourth gun chamber from the left bastion. The men, led by the fearless Whiting, had driven the standard-bearer from the top of the traverse and the enemy from the parapet in front. They had recovered one gun chamber with great slaughter, and on the parapet and on the long traverse of the next gun chamber the contestants were savagely firing into each others faces, and in some cases clubbing with their guns, being too close to load and fire. Whiting was quickly wounded by two shots, and had to be carried to the hospital. I saw that my men were not only exposed to the fire from the front, but to a galling infantry fire from the left salient which had been captured. I saw the enemy pouring in by the river road apparently without resistance. I doubt if ever before the commander of a work went outside and looked upon the conflict for its possession, but from the construction of the fort it was absolutely necessary for me to do so in order to quickly comprehend the position of affairs, and I was

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