A second bombardment of Sumter began this morning, it being reported by the navy that one or more of its guns can be served.
The enemy's batteries on Sullivan's Island opened fire on our advanced works on the right to-day, but with little effect.
In General Orders, Numbers 70, headquarters Department of the South, this date--
Captain C. B. Reeese, Corps of Engineers, U. S. Army, is announced as assistant and consulting engineer on the staff of the brigadier-general commanding the department. All orders connected with the administration of the engineer service will be transmitted through him, and he will have control of the collection and issue of all engineer material.
Sunday, August 30.-The unfinished work of yesterday is in progress to-day. As the moon shines brightly to-night, and the enemy are firing constantly, no attempt was made to advance.
Lieutenant-Colonel Purviance, commanding Eighty-fifth Pennsylvania Volunteers, was killed during this tour of duty as commander of the special guard of the advanced trenches, by one of our own shells, which exploded prematurely.
Monday, August 31.-The cover for troops is being increased in front of the fifth parallel by means of numerous boyaus, having high parapets directed perpendicularly to the resultant of the enemy's fire.
In order to bring a greater musketry fire on the beach to defend our right flank, a rifle trench is being built in advance of, and parallel to, the first line of approach in front of the fifth parallel.
This night being sufficiently dark to conceal our workmen, the advanced line of approach was thoroughly strengthened throughout its length, under the direction of Captain Suess. There was very little fire. All of the torpedoes inside our advanced lines were removed.
In compliance with instructions received through the consulting engineer, one sap-roller was placed at the head of the sap, and one on the right of the fifth parallel this night. The parapets throughout the whole line of trenches are being greatly strengthened. Turf is being cut to cover the service magazines in the second parallel.
The Third U. S. Colored Troops, who have been on fatigue duty in the advanced trenches since the 20th instant, were relieved to-day by the Fifty-fourth Massachusetts Volunteers (Colored), it being desirable to have older troops for the important and hazardous duty required in the advance at this period.* Infantry officers commanding fatigue details inform me that it requires much more effort to make the men work than fight under the same fire.
The firing on Sumter, which was resumed yesterday morning, ceased this evening. The last gun that had the appearance of being fit for service was dismounted.
This night three casualties occurred in the guard of the advanced trenches from the explosion of a torpedo,+ over the plunger of which one of the men crept in taking his position.
Tuesday, September 1.-I wrote to Captain Reese, consulting engineer, this morning:
I regret to be obliged to report myself unfit for duty to-day. I am scarcely sick, but, having been on duty for fifty consecutive days, and the intervening fifty nights (excepting two) until 12 o'clock, I am physically exhausted, and will require a short period of rest to recuperate.
*See Notes 18 and 19, pp. 326, 328.
+See Note 5, p. 310.