War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0144 OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA. Chapter XX.

Search Civil War Official Records

ready to start, found that, on account of the prevailing wind and night tide, the bridge over the East Branch was covered by the feet of water and deep holes reported on the other side. Low water not occurring till after dark, suspended march till next morning, Saturday, February 1. Fresh accident with teams - one gun-carriage damaged, and harness so insecure, though drawn new in Richmond, that we were obliged to procure bolt-rope. This and waiting for repairs delayed us till 12 m., when we marched from Norfolk City.

C. F. HENNINGSEN,

Colonel Fifty-ninth Regiment Virginia Volunteers,

Commanding Batteries, B, C, and D, Artillery, Wise Legion.

NAG'S HEAD, N. C., February 6, 1862.

Brigadier General HENRY A. WISE:

GENERAL: I have the honor to report that, in obedience to your command, I read to Colonel Henningsen, in Norfolk, your orders that all the artillery horses and men were to go by the beach route to this place, except such of the latter as were necessary for the protection of the field pieces, &c., which, with their carriages and caissons, were to go in tow of a steam-tug to the lower section of the canal. Captain L. N. Webb, assistant quartermaster of artillery corps, wrote down, in Colonel Henningsen's presence, the prescribed route, with all the material, as enumerated by Mr. Gallop and embodied in your orders to me. I saw Major Johnson, assistant quartermaster of this department, in order to procure the water transportation for the pieces, caissons, &c. He informed me they were to go that way. I reported that fact to Colonel Henningsen, and he and I went to General Huger, who ordered Colonel Henningsen to take horses, pieces, caissons, &c., by the inland route, as the beach was impracticable from inlets, high tides, and the probabilities of being shelled by the enemy's gunboats.

I have the honor to be, general, your obedient servant,

JAMES H. PEARCE,

Lieutenant and Ordnance Officer.

When General Huger met me here on the 19th instant he was still incredulous about the route. I had ordered and promised to order a survey of it. Unfortunately the enemy are now in possession of Nag's Head and the beach; how far up it is not known. I was myself driven in a two-horse wagon on the evening and night of the 8th as high up from Nag's Head as Gallop's Ferry, and was assured by all who knew that it was the only bad part of the beach route up to Cape Henry. The Currituck and other inlets have filled up long ago, and there is not a foot of the way not passable by horses, footmen, carts, and wagons.

On the evening of January 29 I feet Norfolk, and reached Nag's Head the night of the 30th. I immediately issued Special Orders, Nos.12 and 13, of which the following are copies:

SPECIAL ORDERS, HDQRS. FOURTH BRIGADE, DEPT OF NORFOLK, No. 12. Nag's Head, N. C., January 30, 1862.

The quartermaster, or his brigade agent, for the post at Roanoke Island and Nag's Head will immediately procure twenty lighters, as near 60 feet long, or longer, and 12 feet wide, as he can get them, and have them well calked and water-tight, for the service of ferries and transportation across the Roanoke Sound; to and from the island and the beach and across Currituck Sound; to and from Gallop's on the beach and the shore opposite Powell's Point and across to Croatan Sound; to and from the island and marshes and Tyrrel shore opposite. And to this end he will at once dispatch the steam tug-boat Currituck, Captain C. Bonton, to such places on the waters of the Albemarle Sound as such lighters be obtained at, with orders to return as speedily as possible with as many as she can tow to the wharf at Nag's Head; and Sergt. J. C. Gallop, of Company B, of the Eighth North Carolina Regiment, is detailed for the duty of accompanying Captain Bonton as pilot and to assist in obtaining the lighters. He will examine them,and those fit for service he will take at a fair valuation; and if he and the owner or owners cannot agree on the prices he will cause them to be valued by arbitrators, one to be chosen by him and one by the owner, and if they cannot agree, the two to call in an umpire. Upon the return of the steamer and the lighters to Nag's Head he will report to me, or in my absence to the officer of the post there as to the lighters, and also to his commanding officer at Roanoke Island,