platforms left by the enemy in the small work on that point. At this time and during the stay of his command in the vicinity General O. O. Howard rendered important assistance.
April 7 a large amount of stores was issued, all commands making application for them being supplied. While the army remained in front of Yorktown it was principally supplied with subsistence stores from this depot. On account of the badness of the roads and their location some few of the commands at first sent their wagons to Fort Monroe for rations. The quartermaster's department could give but little assistance in the way of force to lighter and discharge vessels laden with subsistence stores, and our department was obliged to render that and other service, besides performing its own legitimate duties. Fortunately our foresight had caused us to be prepared in a good degree for the emergency. Three days' rations could be issued at once time to each command, which was more than the execrable roads would permit the limited number of wagons to transport. As required, beef cattle were driven from the corral at Fort Monroe to the vicinity of the army, and by Captain E. M. Buchanan, commissary of subsistence of volunteers, issuing commissary of subsistence at headquarters, distributed to the several commands.
May 5 the depot at Ship Point was broken up, and a few hours afterwards established at Yorktown, where the issuing immediately commenced.
On the 8th 90,000 rations of meat and bread were sent to the army near Williamsburg, to meet any urgent demands after the battle, the quartermaster's department promptly furnishing the transportation. The same day with much difficulty, on account of the shallowness of the water, a depot was opened at Queen's Creek, about 12 miles above Yorktown. It was soon removed to Bigler's Wharf, 5 miles farther up York River.
May 11, Captain H. K. Thatcher, Fourteenth United States Infantry, acting commissary of subsistence, left Fort Monroe in charge of a large herd of beef cattle to overtake the army, and all vessels coming from Washington with beef cattle were thereafter directed to proceed with their cargoes to the depots to be established on the Pamunkey River.
Following up the advance of the army, on the 10th of May Captain Porter established a depot at Eltham, on the Pamunkey River, 5 miles above its mouth, where a large amount of stores was issued. He was joined the next day by Captain Bell with his force and a number of supply vessels from below.
Captain E. W. Coffin, commissary of subsistence, volunteer service, was left in charge of the permanent depot at Yorktown. Leaving Captain B. Granger, commissary of subsistence, volunteer service, in charge of sufficient stores to supply the rear divisions of the army yet to pass near Eltham, on the 13th of May Captain Bell proceeded to Cumberland Landing. He arrived there with his party and a number of supply vessels, established a depot the same day, and was ready to meet any demands for rations. On the 14th stores were sent to the White House for the advance guard of the army, under General Stoneman, and to establish a depot there. The next day Captain Porter went up with a force and took charge. On the 19th, Captain Bell broke up the depot at Cumberland Landing, and taking with him all the barges and schooners he had the means of towing, proceeded to the White House. By means of trestles, made of lumber obtained at Yorktown, besides lumber that we had on hand, and barges, a good wharf was immediately constructed at this point. Immense quantities of