War of the Rebellion: Serial 020 Page 0149 Chapter XXVI. SKIRMISH AT COOSAWHATCHIE, S. C., ETC.

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At midnight of the 21st instant the expedition got under way and proceeded up Broad and Coosawhatchie Rivers. At daylight on the morning of 22nd the vessels anchored in the Coosawhatchie River, off the mouth of Pocotaligo, and the troops were ordered to disembark, which having been Charleston and Savannah, without, until the railroad running between Charleston and Savannah, without, until they had marched 6 miles, encountering any opposition; here, however, the enemy made a stand; who were posted in thick wood. After an engagement of nearly an hour the enemy fell back to the north side of the creek, destroying the bridge in their retreat. Here they made another stand at a place called Frampton, but after a resistance of about two hours retreated to the east side of Pocotaligo, 10 miles from where our forces had landed, destroying also this bridge. At this point they had prepared rifle pits and were heavily re-enforced, and the engagement was renewed with great energy upon both sides. Night coming on our troops wee ordered to retire, reaching the landing at the mouth of the Pocotaligo at about 4 o'clock on the morning of the 23d. The nature of the ground, thickly wooded, prevented any use of signals in the battles, but they were extensively and with much advantage used in the debarkation and embarkation of the troops and while on the way between the gunboats. Lieutenants Hill and Cross accompanied the column upon shore, the former in the action acting as aide to Brigadier-General Brannan, who acknowledges Lieutenant Hill's services in his official report; the latter to Brigadier-General Terry. Lieutenant Vidal accompanied Colonel w. B. Barton, with the Forty-eighth Regiment New York Volunteers and a detachment of the Third Rhode Island Artillery, up the Coosawhatchie on board the Planter, and when that force landed accompanied it on shore. Near the railroad they were met and fired upon by a heavy force of the enemy, when they fell back and embarked again upon the Planter. The other signal officers remained under orders upon the gunboats. Our loss in killed, wounded, and missing was 419.* Lieuts. G. H. Hill and J. R. Findley, acting signal officers, have received communications from the commanding officers of their respective regiments informing them that their names have been presented to the Governor of Pennsylvania for promotion to captaincies, their former captains having both been killed in the engagement; they have made application to be relieved from signal duty. By the death of Major-General Mitchel, Brigadier General J. M. Brannan is now in command of this department. By his direction I have placed a signal officer, Lieutenant Paul Brodie, upon the flag-ship Wabash for the purpose of facilitating communication between Admiral Du Pont and General Brannan. By Special Orders, Numbers 345, Private Charles D. Chamberlain, Seventy-sixth Pennsylvania Volunteers, was relieved from signal duty and has rejoined his company, and Private William Morfored, of Company G, Seventy-sixth Pennsylvania Volunteers, has been detailed in his stead. Lieutenant T. P. Rushby is in general hospital, and Lieutenant Gustavus Dana has been assigned to duty at Kane Island.

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

E. J. KEENAN,

1st Lieutenant, 11th P. R. C., and Actg. Chief Signal Officer D. S.

Major A. J. MYER,

Signal Officer, U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.

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*But see revised statement, p. 148.

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