War of the Rebellion: Serial 001 Page 0346 OPERATIONS IN FLORIDA. Chapter IV.

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N. McLaren, First Lieutenant Henry Benson, First Lieutenant M. M. Blunt, A. A. Q. M. and A. C. S.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brevet Major, U. S. Army, Commanding.

Lieutenant-Colonel THOMAS,

Asst. Adjt. General, U. S. Army, New York City.


SIR: I have the honor to report that I arrived at Fort Jefferson to day with my command; garrisoned and assumed command of the post, in accordance with the instructions of the General-in-Chief, dated Washington, January 5, 1861. Strength: four commissioned officers and sixty-two enlisted men, Bvt. Major L. G. Arnold, commanding; Surg. A. N. McLean, First Lieutenant Blunt. I would respectfully inquire if Fort Jefferson is a double-ration post? If not, I request that it be announced as such in orders from the War Department, from the 18th instant.

I am,very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brevet Major, U. S. Army, Commanding.

Colonel S. COOPER,

Adjt. General U. S. Army,

Washington City, D. C.


SIR: I have the honor to report for the information of the General-in-Chief that I found on my arrival here, notwithstanding the energetic, well-directed, and highly-commendable efforts of Captain Meigs, the Engineer in charge, that Fort Jefferson could not be successfully defended from a judiciously-planned and concerted attack with a formidable force without having each front of the work and each bastion armed with artillery.

By the advice of Captain Meigs I dispatched the steamer Joseph Whitney, with Captain Meigs, Engineers, and Lieutenant Benson, Second Artillery, to Key West, where there is an abundance of guns and munitions, with a letter to Captain Meigs, and to send me such guns, &c., as Captain Meigs might deem necessary for the immediate defense of Fort Jefferson, in order that the honor of the Government and the defense of both forts might be maintained.

I am happy to report what Captain Meigs has returned from Key West in the steamer Joseph Whitney with six 8-inch columbiads and four field pieces and an ample supply of ammunition, which, with the two field pieces I brought from Fort Independence, will enable me as soon as they are in position to make a strong defense, most probably to hold this important-the key of the Gulf-against any force that is likely to be brought against it.

I herewith inclose a copy of Captain Meigs' report, and I will here