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The War of the Rebellion: A Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies

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OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 51, Part 2 (Supplements)
Page 80 MD., E. N. C., PA., VA., EXCEPT S. W., & W. VA. Chapter LXIII.

we were enabled to leave the depot by 1.20 o'clock. The delay was produced by not having the ammunition and other articles required for our use, which had not been previaulsy furnished. My horses and men were at the cars by 10 o'clock. We arrived at West Point at 4.30 p. m., and reported to Captain Whittle. He directed us to proceed to the st4emaer logan, remain during the night, and start at daybreak for this place, and report to Colonel Taliaferro. We arrived at 8 a. m. Colonel Taliaferro had received an express frtom Norfolk advising him that an attack would be made during the day or night- probably early in the morning. no attack having been made by 10, Lieutenant Brown with his detachment and two guns was dispatched in the steamer to West Point. My battery was placed in position. My instructions were that we were placed here to protect the battery of heavy guns that were to be mounted at this place. Several stemaers were seen at a distance during the day. We were ready to meet their approach; none came. During the night, at 11 o'clock, Colonel Taliaferro sent me word that he had just heard that an attack would be made upon us by a stemer known to be on the bay. The attack, his informant stated, would be by 3 a. m. He desire me to be on the qui vive, but not to disturb the men. I was up till daybreak. My command was divieed- my four guns in battery onthehigh embankment overlooking the river. The island at this point runs into the river making nearly an acute angle. The banks are precipitious for a greater part of the course of the river, but at the apex of the angle their os a plateau rising but little fromteh level of the river about one- sixteenth of a mile, extending fromteh river to the high bluff. Above the bluff the country extends in a dead level, except where broken by creeks, &c., affording a most beautiful plain for artillery drill. I took a reconnaissane on horseback, with Colonel Taliaferro, of the back country. Tehre are two creeks on each side of Gloucester point, approahing each so nearly that the egress from this place can be readily commanded. The creek below is called Sarah's Creek, the one above Black Swamp. The distance betweeen the nearest points of these creeks is a mile to a mile and a half. Only one raoe passes through thsii interval, passing a few hundred yards from Sarah's Creek. I inclose you an extremely rough and hastily- drawn sketch* of our position. My four guns an three caissons onth eupper plateau immediately overlooking the river on one dside, an on the other overlooking the plateau below and the river beayond. There are two old iron 6-poinders on the lower plateau, which are placed under cahrge of Lituenant Maconand a setahcment of myc oampany. Lieutenant Brown of the present with his detachment and two pieces are near by Lieutenant Macon on the plateau. I hope you can now form some idea of our positon. I shallbe in command of the six pieces. No attack has been made upon us. While I am writing I am informed that both guns, the columbiads, are in position and rady for fighting. This is glorious intelligence. Captain PAGE, Lieutenant Gwathmeny, and CptainMaury are here. This place will soon be perfectly safe. If permitted, I would suggest similar works first on the Rap[pahannock, then the Potomac, and the northern side of James River My commandis raedy to move as we are whenever required. These positons secured and defended by heavy guns, and Virginia is safe from invasion by sea. If you concur with me in opinion press these views uponGeneral Lee. To defend this position the Rappahannock must be immediately protected on the h south side. The danger at this plce is by lane attack from the rear. The iron guns here should be place dupon the bluffs abvove.

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*Omitted as unimportant.

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Page 80 MD., E. N. C., PA., VA., EXCEPT S. W., & W. VA. Chapter LXIII.
OFFICIAL RECORDS: Series 1, vol 51, Part 2 (Supplements)
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