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September 5th, 1863 AD (search for this): chapter 8
sence of the Commanding General, in his own simple, earnest manner, said, I visited Sumter, and conferred with Colonel Rhett. Issue the order, General; I will obey it. The order was issued, and on the evening of the 4th of September Major Elliott assumed command of the ruins of Fort Sumter. On the next day the following important communication was forwarded to the Commander of the First Military District: Headquarters, Department S. C., Ga., and Fla., Charleston, S. C., Sept. 5th, 1863. Brig.-General R. S. Ripley, Comdg. First Mil. Dist., etc., etc.: General,—Forewarned of the enemy's purpose to attack the battery at Cummings's Point, the Commanding General hopes we may be able to foil and convert it into a signal disaster, to which end he wishes you to acquaint Flag-officer Tucker of the project, and request him to take such a position with his ships as may enable him to sweep with his fire the interior face of Morris Island and the mouth of Vincent's Creek. Batt
February 17th, 1865 AD (search for this): chapter 8
s Captain John C. Mitchel, of the 1st South Carolina Artillery (Regulars). He remained in command until the 20th of July, 1864, when, during the third regular bombardment of Sumter, he was killed by a mortar-shell. Captain Mitchel was a son of the distinguished Irish patriot, and a highly accomplished and daring officer. On his death Captain T. A. Huguenin, of the South Carolina Infantry (Regulars), was appointed in his place, and held command of Sumter until its evacuation, on the 17th of February, 1865—nearly eight months after General Elliott had been relieved. The evacuation of Sumter was effected at night, in silence, without a speech from any one, without a cheer from the garrison, without the firing of a gun. In order to keep the enemy in ignorance of the movement then in course of execution, the withdrawal was proceeded with as secretly and noiselessly as possible. And yet the ex-President of the Confederate States and ex-Commander-in-chief of its armies published to the wo
August 17th (search for this): chapter 8
rformed their duty. As further evidence of the estimation in which he held Colonel Rhett, General Beauregard, shortly after this occurrence, strongly recommended him for promotion; but, as was so often the case with applications of this kind, no action was taken in the matter by the Administration. Colonel Rhett remained in command of Sumter as late as the 4th of September. When the last detachment of his artillery regiment was removed he retired, with his disciplined Regulars. From August 17th to that date his journal shows what havoc, both interior and exterior, the Federal breaching batteries and naval forces had made on the fort. See Appendix. The following details, taken from his report of September 4th, forwarded, through General Ripley, to Department Headquarters, show the work which was done at the fort and its condition at that time: * * * Engineers engaged in preparing bomb-proofs and in opening embrasures in second tier of casemates, for the purpose of thro
he 7th instant, to his government, relative to his acquisition of Batteries Wagner and Gregg, contains several errors, which I feel called upon to correct. 1st. Seventy-five men were not taken on Morris Island, for only two boats' crews—about 19 men and 27 sailors, or about 46 men in all—were captured by the enemy's armed barges between Cummings's Point and Fort Sumter. 2d. Colonel Keitt's captured despatches could not have shown that the garrison of Wagner and Gregg amounted to between 1500 and 1600 effective men on the day of the evacuation (6th inst.), for Colonel Keitt reported that morning 900 men, all told, only about two-thirds of whom could be considered effectives; the others being wounded, or more or less disabled from exposure for so long a period to the weather and the incessant fire, day and night, of the enemy's land and naval batteries. The forces holding these works and the north end of Morris Island, during the fifty-eight days siege, varied from 1000 to 1200 m
September 6th (search for this): chapter 8
ile in the performance of his duties. A. A. G., the much-desired key was finally secured. This important discovery was of incalculable advantage, and enabled the Commanding General to be ever prepared against a surprise. The next morning (September 6th) Admiral Dahlgren asked, Did you succeed last night? and General Gillmore answered, We found the enemy prepared at Cummings's Point, and failed. Engineer and Artillery Operations against Charleston, by General Gillmore, p. 335. See also p. 337. Being apprised in the same manner of the day and hour fixed for the final assault on Wagner (September 6th, at 9 P. M.), General Beauregard was able to perfect his plans for the prearranged evacuation of that work, and not only saved the garrison, but deprived the enemy of nearly—if not quite—all the fruits of his victory, as appears by the following signal despatch: Morris Island, Sept. 7th, 1863:5.10 A. M. Admiral Dahlgren: The whole island is ours, but the enemy have escap
September 7th (search for this): chapter 8
ngineer and Artillery Operations against Charleston, by General Gillmore, p. 335. See also p. 337. Being apprised in the same manner of the day and hour fixed for the final assault on Wagner (September 6th, at 9 P. M.), General Beauregard was able to perfect his plans for the prearranged evacuation of that work, and not only saved the garrison, but deprived the enemy of nearly—if not quite—all the fruits of his victory, as appears by the following signal despatch: Morris Island, Sept. 7th, 1863:5.10 A. M. Admiral Dahlgren: The whole island is ours, but the enemy have escaped us. General Gillmore. While, in the course of this narrative, we have been led to refer again to Battery Wagner, whose illustrious record so fully appears in General Beauregard's report of the defence of Morris Island, T See preceding chapter. it is also appropriate, we think, to give here the remarkable history of the only two heavy guns of that work (10-inch columbiads) bearing on the outer
October 8th, 1863 AD (search for this): chapter 8
ve their drooping hopes after the patriotic sacrifices they have made in this terrible contest. Let us, then, unite all our efforts in a last deadly struggle, and, with God's help, we shall yet triumph. I regret I have not time to pay you a short visit, to present you my views more fully, and to discuss with you our future operations. Wishing you ample success, I remain, sincerely your friend, G. T. Beauregard. Headquarters, Department S. C., Ga., and Fla., Charleston, S. C., Oct. 8th, 1863. Brig.-General R. S. Ripley, Comdg. First Mil. Dist., etc., etc.: General,—It is the wish of the Commanding General that you should at once have inquiries made where the fault lies in Evans's brigade not being properly supplied with ammunition. With the exception of the 22d South Carolina Volunteers, now on Sullivan's Island, none of the regiments are completely supplied with the regulation number of forty rounds. The 23d Regiment, stationed some seven miles from Brigade Headqua
September 8th (search for this): chapter 8
stern and southern faces; he was received by a well-directed fire of musketry and by hand-grenades, which were very effective in demoralizing him; fragments of the epaulement were also thrown down upon him. The crews near the shore sought refuge in the recesses of the foot of scarp, those further off in flight. The repulse was decided, and the assault was not renewed. His force is reported to have been four hundred men, but it is believed to have been much larger. In his despatch of September 8th to General Gillmore, Admiral Dahlgren spoke of his assaulting party as being composed of 500 men. In a subsequent paper, referred to by Mr. Charles Cowley in Leaves from a Lawyer's Life, Afloat and Ashore, p. 108, Admiral Dahlgren alludes to the same party as being a fine naval column of 450 picked men. His loss is four men killed, two officers and ninety-two men captured. We secured five stand of colors and five barges; others were disabled and drifted off. One gunboat and Fort Johnso
October 7th, 1863 AD (search for this): chapter 8
of whom were only slightly wounded. It is still more remarkable that during the same period of time, when the enemy fired 6202 shots and shells at Fort Sumter, varying in weight from 30 pounds to 300 pounds, only 3 men were killed and 14 wounded. Indeed, the hand of the Almighty would seem to have protected the heroic garrison of that historic work. Respectfully, your obedient servant, G. T. Beauregard, Genl. Comdg. Headquarters, Department S. C., Ga., and Fla., Charleston, S. C., Oct. 7th, 1863. General Braxton Bragg, Commanding near Chattanooga, Tenn.: Dear General,—I have just been informed from Richmond that the Army of Virginia is about to take the offensive again, to prevent Meade from reinforcing Rosecrans, thus repeating, to a certain extent, the campaign of last July into Pennsylvania, which did not save Middle Tennessee and the Mississippi Valley. You must, no doubt, recollect what I wrote on the subject to General Johnston, on the 15th of May See Chapter XXXI.
September 9th (search for this): chapter 8
d Admiral Dahlgren would not consent to let the commander be other than a naval officer. Ibid., p. 339. The result was the complete failure of the assault, as appears by the following extract from Major Elliott's journal, dated Sumter, September 9th: * * * At 1 A. M. this morning I saw a fleet of barges approaching from the eastward. I ordered the fire to be reserved until they should arrive within a few yards of the fort. The enemy attempted to land on the southeastern and southerof the assault. Many of the shots struck the fort. The garrison, consisting of the Charleston Battalion, behaved admirably; all praise is due to Major Blake, his officers and men, for the promptness and gallantry displayed in the defence. September 9th, 4.20 A. M.—Additional two officers captured are First Lieutenant Charles H. Bradford, U. S. Marines, wounded; E. G. Dayton, executive officer, Wissahickon. One of our gunboats assisted during the fight—unable to communicate with it after
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