Numbers 12. Report of Lieutenant Alexander N. Shipley, Third U. S. Infantry.
FORT PICKENS, FLA., November 26, 1861.
SIR: I have the honor to report the services rended by the batteries under my command during the bombardment of the 22nd and 23rd instant.
I had charge of one 10-inch columbiad in bastion D, barbette; two rifled guns, 42-pounders, James projectiles, in casemate in curtain D E, also one 8-inch columbiad, old pattern, in same curtain. The signal gun was fired at about 10 o'clock al m. of the 22nd, and, in obedience to instructions, the fire from the rifled-gun battery was directed on the rebel steamers lying at the navy-yard wharf. I used shells at an elevation of 6 deg. 30 sec.; charge of powder of powder, 8 1/2 pounders; range, 3,220 yards; fire in-efficient; increased elevation to 8 deg., and subsequently to 9 deg. and 9 1/2 deg., before the steamers could be reached it being necessary to break the arch of the embrasures to procure this last elevation. With these last date, so far as I could judge, the fire was effective. The firing from the rifled-gun battery was directed during the remainder of the first day and all of the second at the rebel batteries on the beach betwixt Barrancas Barracks and the navy-yard; the charge of powder same as before; range, from 2,235 yards to 3,220 yards; elevation, 6 1/2 deg. to 9 1/2 deg. Projectiles during the first day were shells, and during the second solid shot, except an occasional shell. The firing generally, I think, was effective.
The 8-inch columbiad was directed on the same batteries both days; charge, 8 pounds; range as above; projectiles,s hells; fuses varying from 10'' to 14''. The firing from this gun was much more accurate than that of the rifled battery. My 10-inch columbiad en barbette, bastion D, was directed on Fort Barrancas for the greater portion of the first day; range, 2,645 yards; charge, 12 pounds; projectiles, shells; fuse 13'', and the firing satisfactory. During the rest of the first day and all of the second I directed its fire on the rebel batteries adjacent to Fort Barrancas; range nearly the same; charge the same; fuse varying from 12'' to 15'', and firing satisfactory.
I wish to speak well of the conduct of all my men, particularly my first sergeant, Francis C. Choate, and Sergts. William McClenzey and John Morris, and Corporals theodore Kutcher and Nicholas Harper. I am glad to notice the coolness under a very heavy fire of the cannoneers of the columbiad en barbette and the alacrity and skill with which they discharged their duties. One of the rebel shells fell beside the gun, but fortunately failed ot explode. A second buried itself in the magazine cover and exploded, setting fire to the sand bags and canvas cover. A third am through the splinter-proof erected for the shelter of the men, and, exploding, destroyed it, fortunately doing no serious injury to myself or the men beneath it. The firing of the casement guns I left principally in charge of Sergeants McClenzey and Morris. The magazine duties of the barbette gun I intrusted to my first sergeant, Coate.
I am, major, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
A. N. SHIPLEY,
First Lieutenant, Third Infantry, Commanding Company C.
Major LEWIS G. ARNOLD,
First U. S. Artillery, Commanding Batteries.