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sit to Fort Sumter to-day enables me to present to your readers a more correct account of the late engagement in front of Charleston than the one already sent to you, and which was prepared the night succeeding the attack, when but few of the facts had been definitely ascertained. In order to give a full understanding of the affair, it may be necessary to begin the narrative with the first appearance of the Federal armada in this vicinity. At half-past 10 o'clock, Sunday morning, the fifth instant, it was reported at Fort Sumter that twenty-seven vessels were visible just outside the bar, one of which was the Ironsides, and four were monitors or turreted iron-clads. On the morning of the sixteenth, (Monday,) as the fog lifted, it was discovered that the Ironsides, eight monitors, and a large number of other vessels were in sight, the Ironsides having already crossed the bar and come to anchor off Morris Island. An infantry force, variously estimated at from three thousand to six
on you on the eve of the second anniversary of the thirteenth of April, 1861, when the sovereignty of the State of South-Carolina was triumphantly vindicated within the harbor which we are now to defend. The happy issue of the action on the seventh instant--the stranded, riddled wreck of the iron-mailed Keokuk, her baffled coadjutors forced to retire behind the range of our guns, have inspired confidence in the country that our ultimate success will be complete. An inestimably precious charge. Looking out to sea from Charleston, Morris Island is on the extreme right, and Sullivan's Island on the extreme left. After various changes of position, the whole iron-clad fleet advanced to the attack at two o'clock Tuesday afternoon, the seventh, in the following order: The first line consisted of four monitors, the Passaic supposed to be in the lead, with the so-called Devil (a nondescript machine for removing torpedoes) attached to her prow. The second line also consisted of four mon
ing the attack, when but few of the facts had been definitely ascertained. In order to give a full understanding of the affair, it may be necessary to begin the narrative with the first appearance of the Federal armada in this vicinity. At half-past 10 o'clock, Sunday morning, the fifth instant, it was reported at Fort Sumter that twenty-seven vessels were visible just outside the bar, one of which was the Ironsides, and four were monitors or turreted iron-clads. On the morning of the sixteenth, (Monday,) as the fog lifted, it was discovered that the Ironsides, eight monitors, and a large number of other vessels were in sight, the Ironsides having already crossed the bar and come to anchor off Morris Island. An infantry force, variously estimated at from three thousand to six thousand, was landed on Coles's Island, off the mouth of Stono River, during Sunday night. But before proceeding further, it may be well to restate the names of the torts and batteries that participated
obtain soundings, and the excessive difficulty of seeing from the narrow slits in the pilot-house. It was absolutely necessary to have three of these ranges always in sight, involving the necessity of seeing three, four, five miles. The haze rendered this absolutely impossible, and there was nothing for the fleet to do but to lie at anchor in the roadstead it had gained in the main ship channel, along the line of Morris Island, and await further developments. Iii. 'Tis the seventh of April by the chime. We are lying off Charleston harbor. The sea smooth as a surface of burnished steel, is beneath and around us. Sumter looms up in plain sight, a sentinel in the middle of the entrance to the harbor, and the rising sun bathes its top in golden glory; but unlike that Memnon's statue, which gave forth music to the god of day, awakes from its frowning battlements only the hoarse clamor of the daybreak gun. A gentle north wind has blown away the haze, and a diaphanous atmosphere in
e departure of the naval and military chiefs of the expedition — now a couple of iron-clads, now a convoy of gunboats with transports — that one rubbed his eyes at the time of the official announcement of the inauguration of operations on the first of April, to see that the vast fleet, numbering over one hundred vessels, had really gone. On Thursday, the first of April, Admiral Du Pont and staff left Port Royal on the James Adger, General hunter and staff sailing on the following day in the stefirst of April, Admiral Du Pont and staff left Port Royal on the James Adger, General hunter and staff sailing on the following day in the steamer Ben Deford. The fleet, which for a week or ten days had been dropping away from Port Royal, had been during the same time meeting in rendezvous in North Edisto River, which, you will observe, empties into the sea somewhat over half-way between Port Royal and Charleston harbor, and forms a safe and convenient entrepot for the expedition. Arriving at Edisto on Friday afternoon, (April third,) we found the whole fleet assembled in the embouchure of the river. Tides and winds were now th
vous in North Edisto River, which, you will observe, empties into the sea somewhat over half-way between Port Royal and Charleston harbor, and forms a safe and convenient entrepot for the expedition. Arriving at Edisto on Friday afternoon, (April third,) we found the whole fleet assembled in the embouchure of the river. Tides and winds were now the only conditions that remained to control the movement of the expedition. The iron-clads require all the water over the Charleston bar that the most favorable circumstances provide, and it had been made a point that we should be in full fighting trim, and as near as possible to the scene of operations by the full of the moon, (April third,) when for three days before and after that period the spring tides prevail, and the moist star upon whose influence Neptune's empire stands piles up the waters off this coast a foot or two higher than their normal state. The water over the Charleston bar in ordinary times is but eighteen feet. Now,
r maugre many fine popular illusions as to the splendid sea-going qualities of the monitors, all naval men here know that they are utterly unseaworthy, and that they require the deftest and most delicate handling. Now, for several days the wind had been blowing fresh, and ruffled the sea to such an extent as to make Admiral Du Pont unwilling to leave his anchorage, and hazard the inauguration of active operations off Charleston. On the day following our arrival in Edisto, however, (Saturday, April fifth,) the wind went down with the sun, and the resplendent full moon rose on a sea calm as the Galilean lake. With early dawn of Sunday the prows were turned northward, and in the course of three hours the fleet lay to in the station occupied by the blockaders, outside of Charleston bar, half a dozen miles from Sumter. In the afternoon Capt. Rhind was sent in with his vessel, the Keokuk, assisted by C. O. Boutelle, Assistant U. S. Coast Survey, commanding the Bibb, Acting Ensign Platt,
instant--the stranded, riddled wreck of the iron-mailed Keokuk, her baffled coadjutors forced to retire behind the range of our guns, have inspired confidence in the country that our ultimate success will be complete. An inestimably precious charge has been confided to your keeping, with every reliance on your manhood and enduring patriotism. By command of General Beauregard. Thomas Jordan, Chief of Staff. Official : John M. Otey, A. A.G. Mobile Register account. Charleston, April 8. A visit to Fort Sumter to-day enables me to present to your readers a more correct account of the late engagement in front of Charleston than the one already sent to you, and which was prepared the night succeeding the attack, when but few of the facts had been definitely ascertained. In order to give a full understanding of the affair, it may be necessary to begin the narrative with the first appearance of the Federal armada in this vicinity. At half-past 10 o'clock, Sunday morning
ighborhood. The forces on Sullivan's Island (which is a portion of the sub-division commanded by Brig.-Gen. Trapier) were under the immediate command of Colonel D. M. Keitt, of the Twentieth regiment South-Carolina volunteers. Both General Trapier and Col. Keitt were on the island at the time of action, and during the firing were moving from battery to battery. General Beauregard to the troops. headquarters Department of South-Carolina, Georgia, and Florida, Charleston, S. C., April 10. General orders, no. 55. The Commanding General is gratified to have to announce to the troops the following joint resolutions unanimously adopted by the Legislature of the State of South-Carolina: Resolved, That the General Assembly reposes unbounded confidence in the ability and skill of the Commanding General of this department, and the courage and patriotism of his brave soldiers, with the blessing of God, to defend our beloved city and to beat back our vindictive foes. Reso
l have your letter read in every iron-clad of the fleet, so that every man under my command shall know, what has long been familiar to me, the heartfelt sympathy of the Commanding-General of the army of the Department of the South. I am, General, with the highest respect, your most obedient servant, S. F. Du Pont, Rear-Admiral Commanding South-Atlantic Squadron. To Major-General Hunter, Commanding Department of the South, off Charleston. Charleston Mercury account. Charleston, April 11. At two o'clock, P. M., just as the officers had seated themselves for dinner, the first advance of the iron-clad fleet was announced to the commandant of the post. Their anchorage had been within the bar of Ship Channel, off the southern end of Morris Island, some four or five miles from Sumter. Upon inspection, it was judged that good time would be allowed for the conclusion of the meal, and, after communicating the movement by telegraph to headquarters in Charleston, dinner was comf
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