War of the Rebellion: Serial 001 Page 0360 OPERATIONS IN FLORIDA. Chapter IV.

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To which I received the following satisfactory reply:

HEADQUARTERS PENSACOLA DISTRICT,

February 12, 1861.

Lieutenant A. J. SLEMMER, Commanding Fort Pickens:

SIR: I have this moment received your letter of the 11th instant. I am determined to make good the assurances that I have given, that no attack shall be made on fort Pickens, and to discontinue all preparations for one, as stated in my letter to Captain S. Barron, dated January 29. I do not consider the erection of batteries on this side as aiming at an attack on Fort Pickens; but, desiring to avoid all actual or implied preparations for an attack, I will give orders for the discontinuance of the erection of the battery.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WM. H. CHASE,

Colonel, Commanding Forces of Florida, &c.

I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your most obedient servant,

A. J. SLEMMER,

First Lieutenant, Firs Artillery.

U. S. STEAMER BROOKLYN,

Pensacola Harbor, Fla., March 17, 1861.

Colonel L. THOMAS, Assistant Adjutant-General:

SIR: On the 24th of last January I left Fort Monroe, Va., with sealed orders from the headquarters of the Army, which assigned me to the command of the forts in this harbor. On my arrival at this station I met a telegraphic dispatch from the Secretary of War which instructed the commander of the Brooklyn not to land my company for the present. A few days since I requested a copy of the post return from Lieutenant Slemmer in order to make a monthly return of the whole command. He declines furnishing me with it, as he holds that the telegraphic dispatch superseded my orders, and of course deprived me of the whole command. He declines furnishing me with it, as he holds that the telegraphic dispatch superseded by an officer junior to myself both in grade and rank, and that it would have at least informed me directly of the fact if such had been its intention.

I need not point out to you how important in the present critical state of affairs it is to have a perfect unity of command. Should anything occur that may render it necessary that my company should be landed, it is necessary that some previous arrangements should be made for its