War of the Rebellion: Serial 020 Page 0888 COASTS OF S. C., GA., AND MID. AND EAST FLA. Chapter XXVI.

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flotilla armed with the spar torpedoes. I would suggest therefore that three of four of said boats should be stationed in rear of Cummings Point for that special purpose, having it well understood with the commanding officers of the forts when to cease firing on those "alligators," to enable the boat party to assail them.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,


General, Commanding.


Charleston, S. C., April 7, 1863.

Brigadier General R. S. RIPLEY, Commanding First Military District:

GENERAL: It is the wish of the commanding general that all possible precautions shall be taken to conceal from the enemy the range, caliber, and number of our guns on Morris Island, to which end the pieces must be masked as far as possible, and we should to be drawn into an engagement with the iron-clads except at the closet range practicable, so long as the batteries are to endangered by their silence.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,


Chief of Staff.


Adams Run, April 7, 1863.

Brigadier-General JORDAN, Chief of Staff:

GENERAL: The enemy are to reported to have brought with them as yet to Seabrook Island any horses except with the first detachment that landed, and from information received from the prisoner captured that night there could not have been more than enough to man one field battery and perhaps mount a company of cavalry. I had estimated the number landed up to yesterday at about 3,300, and the five transports which came in yesterday (large steam vessels), represented as filled with troops, must have raised their number in North Edisto to about 7,000.

From the absence of horses I am more than ever impressed with the idea that these troops are to move across John's Island to Legareville, the same route taken by them last year, thus affording an excellent opportunity of striking him upon the march. He may slip across at any moment unless a force sufficient to fight him is on John's Island all the time. With my present forces I have only felt authorized to keep upon the island about 200 mounted infantry and a section of artillery, in the nature of an advanced guard to my position on the main. It would be impossible to move against him from the main, even if my force was large enough, within less than eighteen hours, and it would not take him over six to make the march across the island. This matter is again brought to the attention of the commanding general, with the hope that re-enforcement can now be spared me for the purpose indicated. With sufficient force I am satisfied a damaging blow can be struck on John's Island, and if the same line of operations is adopted by the enemy as last year it will be the only chance we will have of acting offensively against him except when under his gunboats.

Our troops on John's Island would be about 18 miles from Rantowles Station. It is proper to add that it is practicable for the enemy to