War of the Rebellion: Serial 006 Page 0004 COASTS OF S. C., GA., AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLA. Chapter XV.

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situated on Hilton Head, and the other two on Phillip's Island. It was deemed proper to first reduce the fort on Hilton Head, though to do this a greater or less fire might have to be met from the batteries on Bay Point at the same time. Our original plan of co-operation of the land forces in this attack had to be set aside, in consequence of the loss, during the voyage, of a greater portion of our means of disembarkment, together with the fact that the only point where the troops should have landed was from 5 to 6 miles (measuring around the intervening shoal) from the anchoring place of our transports-altogether too great a distance for successful debarkation with our limited means. It was therefore agreed that the place should be reduced by the naval force alone.

In consequence of the shattered condition of the fleet and the delay in the arrival of vessels that were indispensable for the attack it had to be postponed until the 7th instant. I was a mere spectator of the combat, and it is not my province to render any report of this action, but I deem it an imperative duty to say that the firing and maneuvering of our fleet against that of the rebels and their formidable land batteries was a master-piece of activity and professional skill that musk have elicited the applause of the rebels themselves as a tactical operation. I think that too much praise cannot be awarded to the science and skill exhibited by the flag-officer of the naval squadron and the officers connected with his ships. I deem the performance a masterly one, and ought to have been seen to be fully appreciated. After the works were reduced I took possession of them with the land forces. The beautifully constructed work on Hilton Head was severely crippled and many of the guns dismounted. Much slaughter had evidently been made there, many bodies having been buried in the fort, and some 20 or 30 were found some half a mile distant.

The island for many miles was found strewed with arms and accouterments and baggage of the rebels, which they threw away in their hasty retreat. We have also come into possession of about tory pieces of ordnance, most of which is of the heaviest caliber and the most approved models, and a large quantity of ammunition and camp equipage.

It is my duty to report the valuable services of Mr. Boutelle, [C. A.] assistant in the Coast Survey, assisting me with his accurate and extensive knowledge of this country. His services are invaluable to the army as well as to the Navy, and I earnestly recommend that important notice be taken of this very able and scientific officer by the War Department.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Brigadier-General, Commanding.


Washington, D. C.



To the People of South Carolina:

In obedient to the orders of the President of these United States of America I have leaded on your shores with a small force of national troops. The dictates of a duty which, under these circumstances, I owe to a great sovereign State, and to a proud and hospitable people, among whom I have passed some of the pleasantest days of my life, prompt me to proclaim that we have come amongst you with no feel-