War of the Rebellion: Serial 001 Page 0354 OPERATIONS IN FLORIDA. Chapter IV.

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by Captain Randolph, who opened them and then forwarded them to Colonel Chase. I remained at the yard all of one day, having been placed on parole of honor not to communicate with any officer of the United States Government either at the forts or at the yard, but learned from reports and what I saw that the fort occupied by the United States had been re-enforced by some thirty or more sailors belonging to the navy-yard. The yard had been surrendered, and all the officers, with the marine guard, had been placed on their parole, and the latter had been placed on board of the Supply, to be conveyed to New York. The yard, as also Fort Barrancas, was occupied by State troops, and Fort McRee was to be occupied so soon as troops should arrive.

I left on the 15th instant, and was given by Colonel Chase the following, in order to allow me a safe passage through the country:


January 15, 1861.

Lieutenant J. S. Saunders, of the Ordnance, is under parole to me, and is free to go to any part of the country he desires; and this is his safe-conduct for that purpose.


Colonel, Commanding Forces of Florida.

I have the honor to remain, respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brevet Second Lieutenant, Ordnance, U. S. Army.

WAR DEPARTMENT, January 26, 1861.

Lieutenant General W. SCOTT:

DEAR GENERAL: The President is much disturbed by a telegraphic dispatch which announces that the Brooklyn has sailed with two companies instead of one as was ordered. I assured him that the dispatch must be inaccurate, but would be glad to repeat the assurance on your authority.

Sincerely yours,


PENSACOLA, January 28, 1861.

To Honorable JOHN SLIDELL, or, in his absence,

Honorable R. M. HUNTER, or Governor BIGLER:

We are the Brooklyn in coming with re-enforcements for Fort Pickens. No attack on its garrison is contemplated, but, on the contrary, we desire to keep the peace, and if the present status be preserved we will guarantee that no attack will be made upon it, but if re-enforcements be attempted, resistance and a bloody conflict seem inevitable. Should the Government thus attempt to augment its force-when no possible call for it exists; when we are preserving a peaceful policy-an assault may be made upon the fort at a moment's warning. All preparations are made. Our whole force-1,700 strong-will regard it as a hostile act. Impress this upon the President, and urge that the inevitable consequence of re-enforcement under present circumstances is instant war, as peace will be preserve if no re-enforcements be attempted. If the President wants an assurance of all I say from Colonel Chase, commanding the forces, I will transmit it at once. I am determined to stave off war if possible.

Answer promptly.