War of the Rebellion: Serial 006 Page 0200 COASTS OF S. C., GA., AND MIDDLE AND EAST FLA. Chapter XV.

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was actually made, but nothing was accomplished. I have, with the assistance of my aides and scouting parties, examined nearly all portions of the island to-day. The conduct of the troops is exemplary, and there will be considerable additions made to our stock of quartermaster's stores.

I am, sir, very respectfully, yours, most obediently,

ISAAC I. STEVENS,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS U. S. AGENCY,

Dr. Jenkins' Plantation, Saint Helena Island, December 10, 1861.

Brigadier General ISAAC I. STEVENS,

Commanding Second Brigade Expeditionary Corps:

SIR: I send you herewith copies of the letters of Brigadier General T. W. Sherman and Chief Quartermaster Expeditionary Corps R. Saxton, captain, U. S. Army, appointing me agent for the United States Government "to take possession of all the cotton, commissary and quartermasters' stores, and all public property that I may find in any part of the State of South Carolina deserted by the inhabitants", also a copy of my letter appointing James A. Suydam my assistant, with full authority with myself. I have taken possession of all the property on Saint Helena, Ladies, and Cat Islands, and have directed Lieutenant Hamilton, of the Fifth Company, and Lieutenant Graham, of the Eighth Company, Seventy-ninth Regiment New York State Militia, to collect and deliver to me all the property on those islands. Mr. Suydam will establish his headquarters at Beaufort, for the purpose of taking possession of all the property, as directed in my instructions.

Respectfully, yours, & c.,

WM. H. NOBLES,

United States Agent.

[Inclosure.]

HEADQUARTERS EXPEDITIONARY CORPS,

Port Royal, S. C., December 3, 1861.

WILLIAM H. NOBLES, Esq.:

SIR: The inhabitants of the deserted islands having been warned of the destruction of their property by the negroes and invited to return and take charge of their plantations, with a promise of ample protection to all loyal citizens, and such invitation and promise of protection having been set at naught by their refusal to return and by several instances of ordering their cotton to be burned, I deem it proper to take steps for the preservation of as much of this article as practicable, in order that such disposition may be made of it as the Government may direct. You are therefore appointed an agent of the United States Government to collect and put into shore, at the most convenient points occupied by the United States troops, such quantities of cotton as you may find in any part of the State of South Carolina deserted by the inhabitants. A correct and explanatory statement will be made by you weekly to the headquarters, showing the amount of cotton stored, its quality, whether baled or unbaled, from whose plantation obtained, and all other information which in your judgment may be necessary to convey a correct idea of its value and the fixing of its ownership, so that the Government will not be at a loss to dispose of the questions