The flag-officer is making every preparation to repel the expected attack, but previous experience shows that gunboats and were vessels of the ordinary class cannot be safely relied upon in cases of this kind. I have therefore to request, for the protection of the military stores at Hilton Head and Beaufort, that arrangements be made with eh Navy Department for promptly sending to Port Royal Harbor on of the new iron-mailed flouting batteries of the monitor class, or, in case this should be impossible, that the Venderbilt or some vessel of equal weight and speed be permanently stationed here to run down the rebel ran on its appearance.
The information relied upon by the flag-officer is partially confirmed by our pickets in and around Fort Pulaski, who report renewed activity on the upper part of the Savannah River, steamers coming down within range of the guns of the fort the purpose of taking sounding and row-boats being engaged in buoying out the channel.
I have the honor to be, sir, with the highest esteem, your obedient servant,
P. S.-I have just had and interview with Flag-Officer DuPont, who considers it extremely important to the safety of his fleet that the Vanderbilt should be sent here immediately.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,
Hilton Head, Port Royal, S. C., July 31, 862.
Honorable E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War, Washington, D. C.:
SIR: The recent call for troops to re-enforce the Army of the Potomac appeared so urgent that seven regiments of infantry were immediately dispatched, under command of Generals Wright and Stevens, thereby making necessary the abandonment of our positions on Edisto and Daufuskie Islands.
It is in my judgement extremely important that both these positions should be reoccupied, and also that strong posts should be established at Georgetown, Brunswick, and Saint Simon's Island.
I have therefore to request that re-enforcements may be sent to this department as soon as possible, not only with a view to future operations, but also for the further security of our present positions and depots.
I have the honor to be, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,