will be sodded (taking for this purpose sod with tall grass); in that strip of sodding the 13-inch shells will be placed in the ground about 40 feet apart, connected with wire or rope attached to stakes driven in the ground, the wire to be about 4 inches above the ground and hidden from view.
On the southwest corner of the fort, a double line of torpedoes will be placed. On the side fronting the river, the ditch between the work and the covered way will be reduced to 10 feet, and the slope of the covered way will be made steeper for want of room. The additional bomb-proof and a magazine will be covered with iron, to be taken from Beaumont for that purpose.
Around, four platforms traverses will be constructed, with 8 feet base, 3 feet top, on the outside of the platform in broken line, leaving 6 feet passage on each side.
The terre-lein will be leveled with one foot fall toward the center and drained through the passage. The breastwork to the right will be completed as now laid out.
The Texas Eastern Railroad will be put in running order first from Sabine City to 5 miles beyond Taylor's Bayou, and then connected with the New Orleans Railroad. Flat cars from the Central Railroad will be placed on it as soon as the former part is completed.
The wagon road between Sabine City and the railroad to be made practicable at all seasons; part of it to be planked.
The line of redoubts will be limited for the present to two redoubts and two redans.
After the above works are completed, or negroes can be spared, a line of breastworks will be thrown up from the second slough in front of the breastworks now under construction to the head of the alke, without leaving any opening; the water from the slough and lake to connect. This breastwork to be 6 feet high and 8 feet top. It is intended partly to prevent the enemy from deploying his forces after landing and keeping him limited to a narrow space within range of the guns of the fort. As soon as a barbette carriage is constructed, you will take one 32-pounder from the Clifton, and mount it in place of the 24-pounder pintle in center.
The 24-pounder to be moved to the lunette, and placed in the capitol.
At Taylor's Bayou a redoubt for four field pieces will be thrown up between the railroad and the lake.
You will report every ten days the progress of the works to this office, at Galveston or Brazos.
HEADQUARTERS COAST COMMAND,
Indianola, Tex., October 10, 1863.
Captain EDMUND P. TURNER, A. A. G., Houston, Tex.:
SIR: Special Orders, Numbers 266, Paragraph XV, bearing date October 1, 1863, in reference to Hawley's dredge-boat being chartered by the quartermaster's department, was received yesterday. In reply, I deem it my duty to submit the following facts before executing said order, and respectfully request further instructions:
This dredge-boat is owned by a company, most of whom reside in the vicinity where it is now lying, in fact, where it has been lying unused for years. Lieutenant-Colonel Lea, of the engineer department, is one of the company. The condition of the boat is such that, in my opinion,