War of the Rebellion: Serial 012 Page 0137 Chapter XXIII. GENERAL REPORTS.

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fused to convoy the fleet during the night, so General Franklin was forced to postpone the movement till morning.

Soon after daylight on the morning of the 6th we got under way. It was a clear day, with a high wind. Nothing that was not foreseen happened on the voyage up the river. It may be mentioned, however, that the fleet was much scattered, and that some of the pontoons which were towed by the steamers broke loose, causing considerable delay. About 12 o'clock, however, the vessels began to arrive at their destination. One or two small boats were sent in close to shore to select the exact spot where we should land and take the necessary sounding. The water was found to be shoal for some considerable distance from the shore, and altogether the landing place was not unlike that for which preparation had been made below Gloucester. This being ascertained, the gunboats took up position so that they could bring a cross-fire to bear on the enemy, should the landing be opposed.

It may be remarked that the spot selected for the landing was a large, level plateau, only a few feet above the level of the river, and cleared for about a mile from the landing place. The only opposition that could have been made to the landing would have been from artillery, which might possibly be concealed in the wooded heights beyond. We knew that no troops in any force would show themselves on the open plateau so directly under the fire of the gunboats.

About 4 o'clock in the afternoon, everything being in readiness, the artillery the troops. About fifty pontoon-boats, manned at first by the detachment of the Fifteenth New York Regiment, moved to the transports containing the troops that were first to land; and now the preparations that we had made came into play. In less than an thou the boats were loaded and at a given signal they all pulled for the shore, carrying some 2,000 men, besides the oarsmen. As soon as the boats grounded the men jumped out and waded ashore, forming at once in line of battle. The oarsmen returned at once with the boats and continued afterward to land the troops as rapidly as possible, but without order, or at will, so to speak, for after the first trip each boat went about its work independently of the others. Care was taken, however, as much as possible to confine the boats to one brigade until it was all landed before the landing of another brigade was commenced. In three jour the main body of the infantry (say 8,000 men) was on shore, formed in order of battle, with pickets thrown out into the woods beyond the open plateau. The men carried their knapsacks and haversacks. The pontoon rafts were used by the officers to land their horses and baggage. The remainder of the infantry followed, but more slowly, as some of the boats were soon wanted for other purposes.

As soon as the infantry began to land I directed my attention particularly to the construction of a wharf. We first brought up one of the lightest of the double canal-boats, as before described, loaded with a battery of artillery, as near to the shore as possible. This was securely anchored in the proper position at high water when it once grounded. This raft was some 200 feet from the shore. Outside of it, parallel to it, and at a distance of some 20 feet from it, was placed and securely anchored the double canal-boat next lightest in draught of water, the space between the two being bridged by one of our heavy gang-planks. In the same manner was placed a third double canal boat or raft. Then we brought up a lift-draught steamer, a ferry-boat forming the pier head of our wharf. This barge also contained a battery of artillery. We then had left one of the double canal-boats with which