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[172] and could not be used. Not a man could show his head in that infernal storm, and I could only keep a lookout in the safest position to inform me of the movements of the enemy.

Contrary to previous practice, the enemy kept up the fire all night. Cooking was impracticable. The men, in great part, in Fisher at the second attack, were not those of the first, and were much more demoralized. The casualties were greater, with but one ration for three days. Such was the condition when the parapets were manned on the enemy's ceasing firing for assault.

As soon as a lodgement was made at Shepherd's battery on the left, the engineers at once threw up a strong covering-work in rear of Fisher, and no effort of ours, against overwhelming numbers could dislodge them.

Then was the time for the supporting force, which was idly looking on only three miles off (which could see the columns on the beach), to have made an attack upon the rear of the assaulting column; at any rate, to have tried to save Fort Fisher, while the garrison had hurled an assaulting column, crippled, back, and were engaged, for six hours, with five thousand men vigorously assaulting it.

General Bragg was held in check by two brigades of colored troops, along a line of no impediment whatever. Once at this line, by the river bank with his three batteries of artillery, and his whole force steadily advancing, the enemy's fleet could not have fired again, without hurting their own men. The enemy had not a single piece of artillery; altogether about seven or eight thousand men.

Pushing our batteries to Camp Wyatt and Colonel Lamb's headquarters, and opening heavily on Shepherd's Battery, with an advance of our troops, and such of the enemy as could not have escaped in boats, must have fallen into our hands; but it was not to be.

I went into the fort with the conviction that it was to be sacrificed, for the last I heard General Bragg say, was to point out a line to fall back on, if Fort Fisher fell. In all his career of failure and defeat, from Pensacola out, there has been no such shame incurred, and no such stupendous disaster.

Wounded, in the hospital, with mortification at the shameful haste, I heard the blowing up of Fort Caswell, before the enemy had dared to enter the harbor.

I demand, in justice to the country, to the army and to myself, that the course of this officer be investigated. Take his notorious congratulatory order, No. 14 (17), with its numerous errors, and

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