War of the Rebellion: Serial 001 Page 0170 OPERATIONS IN CHARLESTON HARBOR, S.C. Chapter I.

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FORT SUMTER, S. C., February 9, 1861.

General JOS. G. TOTTEN,

Chief Engineer U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.:

GENERAL: Nothing of marked importance has transpired since the date of my last better. Your letters of the 2nd and 6th are received. The South Carolinians on Cummings Point have been occupied in perfecting the embrasures and merlons for the three guns in the field work that bear most directly upon this fort, in connecting this battery with the bomb-proof iron-covered battery by a curtain, and in completing this latter battery and extending the parapet of its flanks. On Fort Moultrie the merlons between the guns looking in this direction have been still farther raised, made roof-shaped on top, and supported more strongly by horizontal timbers, kept in place by braces extending across the embrasures at the top. I am now mining the wharf, and am also to arrange fougasses at different points on the exterior.

There does not appear to be very great activity among the South Carolinians, although the force is maintained the same.

I hear that five columbiads have arrived in the city from Richmond, and more are expected.

It is reported that the floating battery prepared in the city is a failure, the draught being greater than was expected.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Captain, Engineers.

No. 40.] FORT SUMTER, S. C., February 10, 1861. [Received A. G. O.,

February 13.]

Colonel S. COOPER,


COLONEL: I have the honor to report everything quiet last night. This morning [Sunday] I see a few men at work, apparently finishing the upper iron work on the lope of the bomb-proof battery. Three large cannon are visible this morning in the huge embrasures of the battery referred to yesterday, near the bomb-proof battery. We are preparing a few mines in front of and to the right and left of the entrance of our work. I would thank the honorable Secretary to give me instructions in reference to vessels bearing the flags of foreign governments in the event of the commencement of hostilities. I presume that no vessel should pass the fort.

I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Major, First Artillery, Commanding.

No. 41.] FORT SUMTER, S. C., February 11, 1861.

Colonel S. COOPER,


I have the honor to report the return of Lieutenant Hall, and to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 1st instant, communicating the gratifying approbation of the honorable Secretary of War of my course in relation to the tender of provisions by the governor of South Carolina, &c.

Everything was quiet yesterday and last night, as far as we could discover, around us. They are still at work with a small force on the