instructions (a copy of which is herewith transmitted, marked A). About dark the entire force-the infantry of the Holcombe Legion (343); cavalry, dismounted (75); the Enfield Battalion (230); and the reserve (four companies, Lieutenant-Colonel Moore's battalion-crossed the Dawho River on a bridge of flats at Pineberry. The section of Washington Artillery and cavalry detachment, mounted, crossed in a flat at Aiken's Mill before sunset, and the force assembled at Governor Aiken's winter residence on Jehossee Island.
After duly organizing his command, Colonel Stevens, leaving the four companies of Lieutenant-Colonel Moore's battalion as a reserve at Aiken's residence, marched his command to Edisto Island about 3 a. m.
On the morning of the 29th instant, crossing Watt's Cut, he proceeded to a place know as the Old Dominion, where the first pickets of the enemy were met, who were immediately attacked, killing one and mortally wounding another (since dead).
Agreeably to my instructions, he divided his command into three columns, one with orders to charge the bridge over the Little Edisto River and capture the company stationed on Little Edisto Island, one in direction of Baynard's, to prevent being cut off, as well as to prevent re-enforcements coming from the main body of the enemy, and another to attack the company at Mr. Whaley's place. These dispositions were faithfully and gallantly executed by Colonel Stevens, who had admirably effected all his arrangements before the movement commenced. I also placed a reserve of four companies of Colonel Moore's battalion at Pineberry, on the main-land, to guard the bridge of flats, as well as to be ready to support the attacking force if required.
About sunrise I crossed over the Edisto River and took my position on Jehossee Island, to be convenient to throw over more troops and to take command should the necessity occur. About 7 a. m. Colonel Stevens sent me a dispatch that he had progressed as far as Mr. Whaley's place, and had driven the enemy to their artillery, and would await further instructions.
Thinking the enemy were in too large a force to be met by his divided command, I immediately ordered him to effect his retreat, and sent forward four companies of the reserve to cover his crossing over Watt's Cut. The retreat was conducted in good order, and the majority of his command had arrived at Pineberry by 9 a. m. On account of the non-arrival of the flats sent for his use, Major Palmer and his command were retarded, and did not arrive until near 11 a. m.
In closing my report I would call the attention of the general commanding to the dauntless conduct of Major Palmer and his command. Crossing the bridge over the Little Edisto River, in obedience to his instructions he burned the bridge in his rear and vigorously charged the enemy, determined to conquer or die in the defense of his country.
To Colonel P. F. Stevens I am greatly indebted for the skill and gallantry with which he conducted the expedition, to which is due its entire success.
For individual instances of gallantry and devotion to our cause I beg leave to refer to the accompanying reports.
To my personal staff great credit is due. Capts. Ralph Elliott and W. Seabrook and Mr. Samuel Cary were engaged during the night in transmitting, under great difficulty, my orders. Asst. Surg. James Evans was on Jehossee Island, prepared to render every assistance to the wounded. The guides (Edward W. Seabrook, Henry Seabrook, Joseph Seabrook, Joseph S. Whaley, and Dr. Hanahan, of the Marion Artillery)