War of the Rebellion: Serial 020 Page 0249 Chapter XXVI. ENGAGEMENT IN CHARLESTON HARBOR, S. C.

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At Moultrie 1 man was killed by the falling of the fla-staff when shot away.

At Battery Wagner an ammunition chest in the angle of the parapet and traverse in the chamber of the 32-pounder exploded from the blast of the gun, killing 3 men, mortally wounding 1, slightly wounding Lieutenant Steedman, in charge of the gun, and 3 men; blew them about 20 feet, cracked the traverses, threw the shot from the pile of balls in every direction, and slightly damaged the chassis. I arrived at Fort Sumter about 2 o'clock at night after the engagement, and found Mr. E. J. White, of the Engineer Department, busily engaged building in the casemates, first and second tiers, behind the damaged walls, with sand bags; several of them were completed and considerably strengthened. this work was continued all night and the next day by the garrison and the 50 negroes who had been employed at the fort and remained during the engagement. On the following morning the fleet lay inside the bar in the same line of battle in which they approached, the first one about 2 1/2 miles from Sumter and 1 1/2 miles from Morris Island. Men were visible all day on the turret of one hammering, evidently repairing her plating. Wind-sails were set, indicating that their quarters, even at this season of the year, were uncomfortable and badly ventilated. About noon one of the turrets went south, probably to Port Royal for repairs, or for the security of that place against our iron-clads from Savannah.

The Ironsides has kept up a full head of steam since the engagement, as can be seen by her constantly blowing off. Three holes are distinctly seen in her stern; two just above the water line.

The "devil" floated ashore on Morris Island; the cables by which it was attached to the turret's bow were cut away. It is probable that the "devil," becoming unmanageable, was the cause of the turret retiring early from the action, it being a massive structure, consisting of two layers of white pine timbers 18 inches square, strongly bolted together; a re-entering angle 20 feet deep to receive the bow of the vessel, 50 feet long, 27 feet wide; a layer of beveled timbers on the front, forming a bow; seven heavy iron plates, through which passed chains directly down and over the sides through hawser-pipes; to these were attached grappling irons, with double prongs, suspended underneath, at the sides and bow; in the countersinks of the places were loose iron rolles, apparently to facilitate the drawing of the chains through the holes over them when the grapplings took hold, to drag up to the "devil" whatever he may catch with his hooks.

The colors of the six turrets remaining on the 8th are as follows:

First turret, lead color; stack, lead color; top of stack, red with black ring.

Second turret and stack, black.

Third turret, black; stack, white; top, green.

Fourth turret, black; stack, black; top stack, one-third lead color.

Fifth turret and stack, lead color.

Sixth turret and stack, black.

The hull of the turret in running trim stands about 2 feet above water level, carrying a whistle, stove-pipe, and stanchions for swinging a small boat on deck, with a light railing around it. When cleared for action she is submerged almost to the water level; the other articles all removed flush with the deck; the issue of steam from the deck several times observed, if not from injury, is probably from the blow-off pipe, taken down flush, as she cannot carry it, as other vessels, on her sides.