they formed. The enemy made no attempt to advance inward from the beach, and after remaining some time on shore retreated hastily to the steamer and put to sea.
We sustained no loss, although under a fire at times very heavy, and continued at intervals seven or eight hours, and saved from the burning schooner some &2,000 worth of stores, principally medicines.
I have the honor to be, your obedient servant,
JULY 7-17, 1862.- Operations in Aransas Bay, Tex.
Numbers 1.- Colonel Charles Livenskiold, C. S. Army, Provost-Marshal, &c.
Numbers 2.- Captain B. F. Neal, C. S. Army.
Numbers 1. Report of Colonel Charles Livenskiold, Provost-Marshal, Corpus Christi.
CORPUS CHRISTI, TEX., July 17, 1862.
GENERAL: Your letter of the 11th instant, by express, came duly to hand, but only this day. From its tenor I see that my communication in relation to the appearance of the enemy off Aransas Bay and his entrance in the bay had not then been received. I will therefore report to you in full since the 7th instant, the date of his first appearance.
On the 7th a bark, with a 100-ton schooner and one large frigate (second-class cutter), came off the bay. The schooner and cutter, with six launches, entered the bay and proceeded to take a position near the Shell Bank, and so as to rake and control the ship channel leading from Aransas [Bay] to Corpus Christi Bay. Upon receiving this news I sent the dispatch-boat Breaker, under Captain Rose, with Captain Ware and 10 men, to make a reconnaissance, and, returning, they reported the enemy's force to be as before represented - all well armed and probably some 225 men. Next Captain Harrison, in command of gunboat General Bee, of Major Shea's command (here present on recruiting service for a crew of sailors), went down and reconnoitered the enemy very closely, say within 200 yards. His report was to the effect that the schooner was heavily armed with cannon, about 125 tons burden, evidently a fine sailer, sharp and deep, and drawing at least 6 feet of water. The cutter was thirty-oared and armed with one 24-pounder howitzer, the launches four-oared whale-boats. The force was deemed too formidable, on account of its superiority in artillery, to warrant any attack or action on the offensive. Three prizes had already been taken by the enemy, say sloop Bella Italia, of 10 or 12 tons, with corn and bacon; schooner Reindeer, of about 15 tons, with 52 bales of cotton, and a lugger, with corn, name unknown. The schooner Monte Christo had been visited, and the cotton at Lamar (some 47 bales) taken off to Saint Joseph and stored near Johnson's house.
I received a communication from Captain Neal upon the subject, which I inclose, marked Numbers 1*. From its tenor I concluded that he was undecided as to what he should do, and desired advice from me.
*See p. 720.