War of the Rebellion: Serial 020 Page 0796 COASTS OF S.C., GA., AND MID. AND EAST FLA. Chapter XXVI.

Search Civil War Official Records

[Inclosure.]

Memorandum of operations contemplated in Second Military District.

1st. The first defensive line taken will be south of the Rantowles and Willstown road, the entrenchments at King's Creek being the right, those at Yonge's Island the center, and the Church Flats Batteries the left.

An attack by a single column upon this position will be resisted obstinately. A general attack along the whole line in strong force will compel its abandonment after holding it merely long enough to ascertain the strength and designs of the enemy. The line is too long and too near the enemy's base of operations. It is also liable to be turned by an advance from Edisto Island across the Dawho, in the neighborhood of Pinebury.

2nd. The second line taken will be behind the Caw Caw Swamp. This swamp, commencing at Rantowles, runs westward for 5 miles, when it divides into tow main branches, one continuing westward to the Edisto River, a farther distance of 5 miles, the other running a little west of north toward Giham's Ferry, higher up on same river.

The left of this line will be the batteries at Rantowles; the center where the new road crosses the swamp a half mile east of its bifurcation, and the right will follow its north branch. The west branch of the swamp will be held by an advanced force of mounted men. The object of taking this line is to delay the enemy and gain time for re-enforcements to join me from the Third District by way of Gioham's Ferry. It is objectionable from its length and form the fact that the north branch of the swamp is practicable almost anywhere to an enterprising enemy.

The enemy will attack its left at Rantowles (seeking the most direct road ot the city), in which case the cavalry on the right will operate offensively on their flank and rear, and the point of attack will be obstinately defended wight the best means at my disposal. In the event of the line being carried at Rantowles the troops massed there for its defense will retire within the lines of the city by the most direct route, and the troops on the right will retire toward Bacon's Bridge, on the Ashley, or the enemy will attack the right of the line, where it is much weaker, and seek a more circuitous but safer route the city. IN this case this line can only be held long enough to make the enemy concentrate and prepare for carrying it. It is hoped that time sufficient for the junction of the troops from the Third District can be thus obtained. When the line is thus carried the troops at Rantowles will retire by the shortest route (behind the city lines) across the Ashley and proceed up the eastern side of that river to unite with their command at Bacon's Bridge. The troops on the right will fall back direct to Bacon's and Slann's Bridges, on the Ashley.

3rd. The third line taken will be behind the Ashley, to protect the South Carolina and Northeastern Railroads. The troops from the Second and Third Districts united will hold Slann's Bridge, down to old Fort Dorchester. The crossings below, where pontoon bridges may be thrown across, will also be looked after by them, but these should be held by troops from the garrison of the city. A battle will be fought in defense of this line, without orders of the city. A battle will be fought in defense of this line, without orders to the contrary. The line of retreat from this line will be down the peninsula to Charleston, or if this line of retreat should become impracticable from the enemy's effecting a passage of the river near the city, then by way of Summerville and