War of the Rebellion: Serial 009 Page 0170 OPERATIONS IN NORTH CAROLINA. Chapter XX.

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the Chowan River in North Carolina. I have respectfully applied to General Huger for these copies in vain, and they involve issues of fact and of responsibility which are important to the public service, to him, and to myself.

The leave of absence given me expires in a day or two, and to-morrow or the next day I will report to you in person at Richmond. I would have reported earlier but for the illness of my wife.

I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,



Numbers 25. Report of Colonel H. M. Shaw, Eighth North Carolina Infantry.


February 24, 1862.

GENERAL: I submit the following report of the battles on Roanoke Island on the 7th and 8th instant between the Confederate forces, under my command, and those of the United States, commanded by General Burnside and Commodore Goldsborough. I also transmit herewith the reports of Colonels Anderson, Jordan, and Green, and Majors Hill and Fry, and Captain J. S. Taylor, who was on detached service at the batteries:

On the morning of the 6th instant the enemy made his appearance, reconnoitering in the neighborhood of the marshes. Four or five steamers could be seen, but the atmosphere was so heavy the exact number could not be made out with certainty. I immediately pushed down two more companies to Ashby's Landing, to support the two pieces of artillery which had been placed at that point some time before; sent off a dispatch to you, informing you of the enemy's movement, and then repaired to the lower part of the island to obtain more definite information. Reaching Ashby's Landing, I discovered a large fleet of the enemy apparently at anchor below the marshes, and at a distance of about 8 or 10 miles from Ashby's. With the aid of a glass about sixty steam and sail vessels could be counted. Returning to camp, preparations were made to move the entire effective force to the southern part of the island, in compliance with your orders received in the evening. Having detailed a sufficient number of men to guard my camp and that of Colonel Jordan, the balance was marched down. A part bivouacked near Ashby's and the rest on the lower end of the island,in the immediate vicinity of Pugh's Landing. Taking Major George Williamson and a strong picket guard I repaired at once to Pugh's Landing, where I learned from Captain Pugh that the fleet of the enemy, numbering about seventy vessels, gunboats and transports, was anchored in the sound, about 4 miles from his landing.

The fog being very heavy, it was 9 o'clock in the morning before the fleet could be seen with any sort of distinctness. At about 10 o'clock the movement of the fleet commenced. I remained at Pugh's until several of the steamers had passed through the marshes at the main pass, and as there was no indication of an intention on the part of the enemy to effect a landing at that place, I directed Major Williamson to remain with the picket guard to watch the movements of the enemy, and if he should find that no landing would be attempted at that place to return to Ashby's, taking with him the troops and the field piece,