War of the Rebellion: Serial 006 Page 0049 Chapter XV. ENGAGEMENT AT PORT ROYAL FERRY.

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launch having a 12-pounder gun, and when the landing was effected they were to move towards the ferry pari passu with the advance of the land forces. This plan was in substantial points carried out. Four companies, however, of the Fiftieth Pennsylvania, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel Brenholts, were moved directly from the town of Beaufort by means of flats collected in that vicinity on the 31st, and the flats collected in the Brick-yards Creek were found insufficient to embark the six companies of the Fiftieth Pennsylvania, which had therefore to wait till the boats were sent back.

In the night of the 31st and 1st I visited all the troops and positions on the island, and at 3.30 o'clock was with all the troops at the place of embarkation, which I superintended in person. At the first break of day we were under way, viz: seven companies of Highlanders, four companies of the Fiftieth Pennsylvania, and the entire Michigan regiment. This side of the Brack-yard met Captain Rodgers and his four launches, and immediately pushed for the opposite shore. Meanwhile the gunboat Ottawa had made her appearance. I landed at about 8 o'clock at a good landing place below the cotton-gin and some 3 miles below the Adams house, and immediately sent back boats to take off Colonel Christ's command, with orders to land them at the Adams house. I found also that the Eighth Michigan was still waiting in the creek, having misunderstood my orders. I sent word to them to push at once to the Adams house, and immediately sent back boats to take off Colonel Christ's command, with orders to land them at the Adams house. I found also that the Eighth Michigan was still waiting in the creek, having misunderstood my orders. I sent word to them to push at once to the Adams house. I found also that the Eighth Michigan was still waiting in the creek, having misunderstood my orders. I sent word to them to push at once to the Adams house, and turned off in the same direction all the flats which had not come up, and with five companies of the Highlanders, and the four companies of the Fiftieth Pennsylvania, consisting of about 500 men, and with two howitzer from the boats under the command of Lieutenant Irwin, U. S. Navy, I commenced my march. We moved rapidly and in good order, employing the Highlanders as skirmishers and to howitzers to drive off small parties of the enemy. We observed them at several points, but without noticing the few shots they fired at us we pushed to the Adams house, where we arrived after a very fatiguing march at about 11 o'clock.

It was some two and a half hours before I was able to resume the movement with the remaining forces. At 1.30 o'clock I formed my order of march, and avoiding the main road, but pushing across the open field, I marched for the fort. The Highlanders were in advance, preceded by two companies thrown out as skirmishers. The two howitzers of the Navy followed. The support were the regiments of Colonel Christ and Colonel Fenton, and the Forty-seventh and the Forty-eighth New York constituted the reserve, under Colonel Perry. Now the signals came most beautifully and effectively into use. All the commands bore the flag which had been agreed upon, viz, a ground of white and blue. The signal officer, Lieutenant Tafft, was with the skirmishers, communicating constantly with his colleague, Lieutenant Cogswell, on board the Ottawa. The concert of action thus established was absolutely perfect. The skirmishers marched steadily on, followed at proper intervals by the entire command, moving in column of companies or divisions or by flank, according to the ground. The shells from the gunboats tore through the woods just in advance of the skirmishers. They had well passed the position taken by the enemy in the woods when he opened his battery upon our columns. I got my command into the position I desired before the troops ascertained that it was not the fire of the boats but the fire of an enemy. It was exceedingly well adapted to the ground and favored my getting information by means of skirmishers. Nor was it possible for the enemy, although in large force, to make a flank movement against me without my being able in

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