aright, and if so, I will be most happy to try and conform to what has been done by other States and to what is most agreeable to the Confederate Government in the general policy you may direct.
I have no object but to do justice to the State, and surely should never have made any demand at all for the arms until the war was closed if our own State had not been invaded and our arms absolutely needed to put into the hands of regiments now actually mustered into Confederate service. Having been informed that we had arms out of use now, I thought it nothing but right to send for them.
Be so good as to let me know if I am right as to the general information I have received through Colonel Duryea.
HEADQUARTERS FIFTH MILITARY DISTRICT,
Hardeeville, February 3, 1862.
Captain W. H. TAYLOR,
Assistant Adjutant-General, Headquarters, Savannah, Ga.:
SIR: I have the honor of acknowledging the receipt of your letter of the 31st ultimo, asking the cause of the "withdrawal of the guns and forces from Red Bluff."
I evacuated Red Bluff, as already communicated to headquarters at Coosawhatchie, on the 1st instant,* because I regarded it as indefensible against gunboats armed with heavy pieces.
With the two 240 pounders and the two short howitzers, aided by the obstructions I had placed, 1,000 feet below the fort, any attack from open boats could probably have been repulsed.
As long as I was in expectation of receiving a large gun for the single gun battery marked D on sketch*, I felt disposed to risk keeping the troops at Red Bluff; but when the general of the department told me in the cars the other day that the cannon he had intended for me must under the threatened attack upon Savannah be sent there, I concluded to fall back with the whole command to such a point about 4 miles distant as would not only permit a prompt resumption of the post whenever an 8-inch howitzer or columbiad could be obtained, but at the same time occupy a position near Savannah [and] adjacent plantations as would overcome the negroes, who had just given some evidence of insubordination.
By reference to the sketch accompanying this, the commanding general will observe a sector of fire, A, B, 1,000 yards off from the fort, from whence the gunboats might fire into the embrasures without receiving a single shot in return. The two batteries are connected by a covered way. While I now write, four steamers and gunboats are close up to the chain obstruction below the fort, throwing shells into it. The guns, ammunition, and public property of all kinds have been removed to a place of safety and are now with Captain Elliott's command at Hardee's, in which direction I am now going.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
THOS. F. DRAYTOM,