Captain Walpole reports that enemy have been passing to and from Dixon's Island to Green Creek all day.
The fleet at Port Royal is two steam frigates, two sloops of war, nine gunboats, one iron-clad, and sixty-eight transports of various classes.
Brigadier-General Clingman this day assumed command of the second subdivision, First Military District.
September 16, 1863.-There are inside the bar this morning the Ironsides, five monitors, two mortar-boats, and twenty-five other vessels, and the blockading vessels off the bar.
Major Elliott, commanding at Sumter, reports that the enemy are still working at Battery Gregg, and exposing themselves with impunity. One banded 42-pounder at Sumter was thrown on the berm.
A few shots were fired to-day at the enemy from some of our Sullivan's and James Islands batteries.
Fourteen shells were fired from Simkins up to 4 p.m. Want of friction tubes caused that battery to cease firing from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Battery K, Sullivan's Island, kept up a slow mortar fire on the enemy during the day.
Captain R. Press Smith, jr., reports that he to-day assumed command of the triple-banded Brooke gun and three mortars west of Moultrie. One percussion shell was fired from the Brooke gun at a battery the enemy were erecting on Morris Island, and struck near the working party. Twenty-one shells were fired from the mortars during the day; but in the evening, owing to a violent rain storm and continued high wind, the firing ceased.
Twenty-five men were seen going to-day from Cole's Island, with spades, to the island south of James Island, and a company of 50 men, with guns, returned to Cole's Island.
Major Manigault reports:
No force visible on Black Island, though one or two individuals seen there in the course of the day. No firing from battery Haskell.
An 8-inch columbiad was to-day mounted on the extreme right of the West Columbiad Battery, Sullivan's Island.
The last of Anderson's brigade arrived to-night. This brigade is composed of the following regiments: Seventh Georgia, Colonel [W. W.] White; Eighth Georgia, Colonel [John R.] Towers; Ninth Georgia, Colonel [B.] Beck; Eleventh Georgia, Colonel [F. H.] Little; Fifty-ninth Georgia, Colonel [Jack] Brown.
A report of this date was received from Colonel Stokes, giving the details of the capture of a portion of a party of the enemy who were endeavoring, by means of attaching a wire to our telegraph line between here and Savannah, to intercept any important dispatches. Their early discovery and the subsequent capture of the operator, all of the white persons, and 1 negro on the 13th instant, frustrated their designs. It is believed the remainder of the party, composed of negroes, have escaped, though every exertion was used to prevent it on the part of Colonel Stokes.*
General Taliaferro telegraphs that he discovered yesterday that the enemy had erected a battery on Dixon.+ looking toward Secessionville, and a stockade across the island in the rear. A subsequent
*See Capture of Union telegraph party near Lowndes Mill, Combahee River, South Carolina, September 13-14, 1863, p.728.
9 R R-VOL XXVIII, PT I