War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0111 Chapter XX. BATTLE OF ROANOKE ISLAND, N.C.

Search Civil War Official Records

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF NORFOLK, Norfolk, Va., February 11, 1862.

SIR: I telegraphed to you this morning that I had a letter from General Wise, dated 9 a. m. yesterday at Poplar Branch, Currituck County, North Carolina. He would move on to the Canal Bridge and collect all his troops there. I have before reported to you I sent Colonel Corprew, Sixth Virginia Volunteers, to the same point. They left via canal early yesterday morning. I have not yet heard of their arrival. General Wise's account of the capture of Roanoke Island is from the report of a sergeant - Metzer, McCullough Rangers - who left the island at 5 p.m. on the 8th instant. He reports that Lieutenant Selden, in charge of a howitzer, which did great execution, was killed. Captain O. J. Wise was wounded thrice and carried to the hospital, where it is reported he died, and Captain Coales was killed. All this is only report.

As I heard that Colonel Henningsen had retreated from Elizabeth City toward Edenton, I sent three pieces of Captain Girardey's company (Louisiana Guard) and the Second Battalion of the Third Georgia toward South Mills.

I just have the following report from Sewell's Point: "Three steamers have left the Roads seaward bound. Seventeen schooners are getting under way."

The enemy seem re-enforcing their forces in Albemarle Sound. I cannot detach further. Re-enforcements must be sent to guard the railroad beyond Meherrin. I have telegraphed General Gatlin he must take care of the Roanoke River and Weldon.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,



General S. COOPER,

Adjutant and Inspector General.

WAR DEPARTMENT, Richmond, Va., February 23, 1862.

Major General B. HUGER, Norfolk, Va.:

SIR: I have the honor to inclose herewith copy of a letter addressed by General Wise to the President, with copy of the indorsement by the President. You are respectfully requested to make such remarks thereon as the nature of the case my in your opinion require, and report the same.

Your obedient servant,


Secretary of War.



His Excellency JEFFERSON DAVIS, President, &c.:

SIR: Your are aware already, doubtless, of my defeat and disasters. I did my best to prepare for the unequal conflict. Unequal it was. In vain I appealed for re-enforcements; the reply was on order to my post, and that "supplies, hard work, and coolness, not men," were all that