main-land at Adams' Landing about 11 o'clock in the morning of the 1st instant, and was carried on without interruption until our troops had all recrossed to Port Royal Island, on the morning of the 2nd instant. By means of the signals the position of the enemy, your own movements and wishes, were promptly communicated to Captain Rodgers, enabling him to render you assistance, which otherwise would, I think, have been impossible. This is, as far as I am aware, the first time this system of signaling has been used in action. I flatter myself that it has proved successful, and trust that it will meet with your approval.
Permit me, before closing, to call your attention to the able and efficient manner in which Lieutenant Tafft managed the signals on shore. During the whole march from Adams' Landing to the ferry he so managed it that only for a few minutes was he so situated that he could not instantly open communication, though in order to accomplish this he was frequently exposed to the direct fire of the enemy.
All of which is respectfully submitted.
WM. S. COGSWELL,
Lieutenant in charge of Party attached to Second Brigade.
General ISAAC I. STEVENS.
BEAUFORT, S. C., January 4, 1862.
MAJOR: I hereby transmit the following report of signal operations:
During the first of last month General Stevens occupied Beaufort, and as soon as possible after our arrival stations were built and communication opened with headquarters on Hilton Head, since which time the line has been constantly employed in the transmission of messages.
On the 31st of last month I was notified by General Stevens of an expedition to surprise and take possession of a battery of the enemy, and received orders to report to Captain Rodgers, on board the gunboat Ottawa, for signal duty.
On the morning of the 1st instant I accompanied Captain Rodgers, who went with the launches to cover the landing of our forces.
After our troops had landed I returned to the Ottawa, and opened communication with the shore at Adams' Landing (a point about a mile and a half from the first landing, but in order to reach it the troops had to make a circuit inland, and were hid from the shipping by thick woods) about 11 o'clock, from which time until all our forces had recrossed to Port Royal Island, on the morning of the 2nd instant, communication was uninterrupted. The distance from Adams' Landing to the ferry is about 2 miles (the ferry is where our troops remained overnight and crossed the next morning); the shore is swampy, and heavy woods come down nearly to the water, with occasional openings. In these woods the enemy were posted, and through them our forces had to fight their way to the battery at the ferry. By means of your signals Captain Rodgers was kept constantly informed of the position of the enemy and the disposition of our troops, and was thus enabled to direct his fire with precision and without fear of injuring our own men.
Nothing could be more perfect than the manner in which we were able to transmit communications; it exceeded my expectations entirely. During the whole march, which occupied some four hours, I do not think there was more than ten minutes during which we could not transmit