War of the Rebellion: Serial 020 Page 0425 Chapter XXVI. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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an account of its superior healthfulness, our chief hospitals have been placed. This you see will leave me, taxing all our resources to the uttermost, but 12,250 men to take to the attack on Charleston; while from the most reliable calculations we have been able to make the enemy will be enabled to concentrate not less than 65,000 men (and many estimates put these figures 10,000 higher) in and around the defenses of Charleston City and Harbor.

These statements are merely put on record for your information, and not, so far as the operations against Charleston are concerned, as a demand for more troops. The force named will be sufficiently powerful to take permanent advantage of any successes gained by the Navy, as at New Orleans, and will also, I trust, an shall strongly endeavor so to make it, be to make a strong diversion in favor of the Navy during the attack.

Nevertheless it is but right to call to your notice one of "the saddest legacies" (quoting the words of a distinguished officer of the Navy, expending of it) left by Major-General Foster to this department during his brief visit-an indiscretion on his part which I have reason to apprehend may cost my intention to have debarked the command on the southern extremity of Morrison Island, near Light-House Inlet, or along the northern extremity of Morris Island, near Light-House Inlet, or along the northern extremity of Folly Island, from whence Light-House Inlet could readily have been crossed and an advance made against the rebel batteries on Cummings Point. Everything promised fairly for this operation, the enemy having evidently overlooked the accessibility and advantages of this position-a neglect from which they were indiscreetly aroused by Major-General Foster, who landed some members of his staff, with 15 men, on Fully Island, about 3 p. m. one afternoon, in full view of the enemy's pickets, the apparent object being to make a reconnaissance of a stretch of sea-beach, every foot of which was under the observation of the glasses of the Navy and had been for some months. The result is that the enemy have now thrown up strong works on Morris Island, commanding Light-House Inlet and sweeping the northern extremity of Folly Island; their laboring parties being now observable clearing away the small sand hills and whatever other natural cover the ground afforded.

All these matters are respectfully submitted for your consideration but let me add, neither in a complaining nor desponding spirit. I have the fullest faith that a glorious victory awaits our arms at charleston, and you may rest assureds general, that no efforts shall be lacing on my apart to secure this result.

With the highest esteem, I have the honor to be, general, your very obedient servant,

D. HUNTER,

Major-General Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,

Hilton Head, S. C., March 7, 1863.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.:

GENERAL: I have the honor to transmit herewith certified copy of an order* relieving General Naglee from duty in this department and

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* See Special Orders, No 127, Headquarters Department of the South, March 5, 1863, on p. 420.

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