War of the Rebellion: Serial 020 Page 0871 Chapter XXVI. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-CONFEDERATE.

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The board report that in addition to the above there should be a movable column of 20,000 men.

6th. The board report that the number of negroes called for during the last four months was 1,500; that the number received was 3,000; that the average number of effective hands employed was, for December, 1,500; for January, 2,000; for February, 2,000; first half of March, 1,500.

the board further report that all these negroes have been discharged, and that an additional force of 1,500 negroes had been called for but not yet received.

The board adjourned to meet against Monday, March 30, 1863, at 11 a. m.


Savannah, March 30, 1863-11 a. m.

The board met pursuant to adjournment.

Present: Brigadier-General Mercer, commanding District of Georgia; Brigadier-General Taliaferro, Provisional Army of the Confederate States; Brigadier-General Walker, Provisional Army of the Confederate States; Captain W. W. Gordon, recorder.

The official report of "Guns applied for by General G. T. Beauregard for the defense of Savannah" was submitted to the board, showing an aggregate of fifty-four pieces of heavy ordnance, instead of twenty-five pieces, as heretofore stated. The board ordered that this report be annexed hereto as Appendix E.


In conclusion, that they may not be regarded as extravagant in the estimate of forces, defenses, and heavy guns recommended by them as necessary for the defense of Savannah, the board would very briefly state the controlling reasons upon which their judgment is based.

1st. In the first place it is impossible to determine the extent of the defenses, &c., necessary unless they could know the extent of the force to be repelled; but it is reasonable to infer that the enemy would not attempt to make a real attack upon a fortified city without bringing to bear upon it a formidable force and all the available means at his disposal. The estimate of that force is much greater than that reported by the board as necessary for the defense.

2nd. The city is approached not only by the Savannah River, but by the Augustine Creek, the Wassaw, the Vernon, and the Ogeechee Rivers to within distances ranging from 4 to 12 miles. To guard these several water approaches outworks have been constructed and partially armed.

It is evident that these works, being located upon different and not the successive defenses of the same water-course, are of equal importance and mutually dependent upon each other; for should one of them fall, and the enemy be thus enabled to land, the others would be turned by a land force and could be taken in reserve and rendered unavailable. This chain of works should therefore be composed of links of equal strength, and if possible rendered formidable enough everywhere to resist the naval forces of the enemy.

3rd. The enemy after effecting by six plain and good roads, radiating from it. The enemy after effecting a landing could and probably would advance by more than one of these roads at the same time. To hold the enemy in check here troops would be required in addition to the troops employed in manning the interior line, for were the troops taken from