War of the Rebellion: Serial 005 Page 0377 Chapter XIV. KANAWHA VALLEY, W. VA.

Search Civil War Official Records


November 13, 1861.

GENERAL: I have the honor to report that no the day before yesterday I commenced an embankment for a battery of four heavy guns at the river bank, about one third of a mile below the ferry-house, at Budd's Ferry. The point selected is about 20 feet above the water, and directly opposite to the two rebel batteries at Evansport and Shipping Point. The soil is loose sand, and the interior slope will be rivetted with poles about 4 inches in diameter. The work will require from six to eight working days. I respectfully request you will inform me what kind of guns are intended for this work-whether it is to be for mortars or guns, and if the latter, whether I shall place them in barbette or embrasure. If the latter, the fire will be directed only upon the two batteries aforesaid, but the same work can be continued at an angle of 37 with this, making aa wide-mouthed redan, the second face giving a fire with four more guns upon the battery at the mouth of Chopawamsic Creek, a mile and half below, where the rebels have a few heavy guns. If the guns are to be in barbette, they can be directed upon both the two upper and the lower batteries.

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


Captain, U. S. Topographical Engineers.

Brigadier General R. B. MARCY,

Chief of Staff, Army of the Potomac, Washington, D. C.

OCTOBER 23-27, 1861.- Confederate reconnaissance in the Kanawha Valley West Virginia.

Report of Colonel J. N. Clarkson, C. S. Army.

In obedience to your orders I have reconnoitered the valley of the Kanawha on the southwest side of the river from the mouth of Loop Creek to Lens' Creek, a point 26 miles below the falls. I entered the valley with a part of my command on the evening of the 23rd, as soon as it was dark enough to avoid observation, and proceeded as far as Montgomery's house, opposite Cannelton, without meeting any of the enemy or attracting their attention. About a quarter of a mile above Cannelton, at the mouth of Smithers' Creek, the enemy have one regiment infantry stationed, and one or two companies at Slater's Run, just below Cannelton. In passing this point we were discovered by the enemy on the opposite side of the river, and before we left we heard their drums beating the alarm and their boats crossing over to our side. From this place we pushed on down the river, stopping wherever we would be likely to gain information, without meeting with any obstruction until we got to Lens' Creek. I had originally intended to move on rapidly to Malden or Charleston, cross the river, surprise the small force of the enemy stationed there, recross the river, and return up Lens' Creek by the way of Peytona, on Coal River, but learning that there would be a large attendance on Paint and Cabin Creeks on the election to be held the next day, I determined to return and go up those creeks. Near Lens' Creek we hailed a steamboat ascending the river and fired into her several rounds. After the first fire she made three attempts to land, but owing to the length of my line along the river bank I could not prevent my men from