Lieutenant Randolph, of the Third New York Artillery; Lieutenant Skinner, commanding Company D; Lieutenant Joslyn and Sergeant McKay, of Company H, rendered valuable aid in searching the houses, scouting the woods, &c.
I desire especially to mention Sergeant Safford, of the Third new York Cavalry, Company G, for his brave conduct under all circumstances. He was especially cool and daring, leading off in two charges in a most gallant manner.
I am, sir, yours, very truly,
CHARLES D. SANFORD,
Captain, Commanding Guard at Batchelder's Creek, N. C.
Colonel HORACE C. LEE,
Commanding First Brigade.
AUGUST 14-15, 1862.- Reconnaissance from Newport to Swansborough, N. C.
Report of Colonel Charles A. Heckman, Ninth New Jersey Infantry.
HDQRS. NINTH REGIMENT NEW JERSEY VOLS.,
New port Barracks, N. C., August 16, 1862.
GENERAL: I have the honor to report that in accordance with your order I left camp on the evening of the 14th at 7 p. m. with one squadron of cavalry and 100 infantry on a reconnaissance. I took the White Oak road, crossed the bridge over Pettigrew's Creek, and continued on this road until we arrived within 2 miles of Peletier's Mill, where I found a good road leading to the mouth of Pettiford's Creek, at which point I expected to find means of transportation across the White Oak River, which would bring me in the rear of Swanborough, and enable me to capture at least the pickets of the enemy. But I was sadly disappointed, the boats having been destroyed the week previous, as I was informed by a person slumber I was compelled to disturb for the night. I could not find anything in the shape of a boat and again took up the march for Cedar Point.
I took possession of Mr. E. Hill's plantation, opposite Swansborough, at 4 a. m. Hill's place is one high ground, separated from the village by White Oak River, about 2 miles wide, and having over 5 feet water in the channel. The only transportation that I found here was one yawl and a canoe, capable of carrying 16 persons. I dispatched Captain McChesney, with 12 men, in the yawl, followed by 4 men in the canoe, armed with rifles and Colt's navies, with orders to reconnoiter and secure two flats, but not to attempt a landing.
On his return he reported that on his getting within a half mile of the shore a gun was discharged, and instantly a body of armed men, numbering from 250 to 300, made their appearance from the heavy timber in the rear of the village. They started three boats to capture him, but altered their minds on receiving a volley from his little party, and skedaddled for the timber. Not deeming it prudent to run in nearer the shore with so small a force, the captain returned.
Having done all that was possible with our limited transportation, I took up the return march by another route. When about 8 miles from the Point, a sailor with a fowling-piece, was picked up, who informed me that two steamers (stern-wheelers) were aground in the sound, and