The fire of the enemy on this morning, especially from one of the more advanced land batteries, armed with Parrott guns, did serious damage to Battery Wagner. The remaining 10-inch columbiad was dismounted from the sea face of the battery, and the magazines so much exposed that it became necessary to remove the ammunition, and General Taliaferro (who had previously relieved General Hagood in the command), anticipating a renewal of the bombardment upon the completion of the exchange of prisoners, requested as a matter of prudent precaution that all necessary arrangements should be made for the transfer of the troops from the island in case of necessity.
The exchange of prisoners was completed about 2 o'clock, when the flag-of-truce boat returned. The enemy, however, did not renew his attack, and the time thus allowed was improved to the utmost in repairing the damage which had been done.
The condition of the battery, as reported by General Taliaferro, was submitted to the general commanding, and after full deliberation it was determined to hold it, and instructions sent to General Taliaferro not to abandon the works without express orders to that effect.
From that date to the present, the bombardment has never been renewed, although there has been occasional and brief fire upon the battery from the iron-clads. In the meantime, the battery has been thoroughly repaired and placed in a condition even superior to what it was in the beginning.
The enemy meanwhile are busily at work in improving their present works and erecting new ones, of which our means of observation do not enable me to give a detailed account. On our side, new batteries have been erected, and the work of completing them and mounting the necessary armament actively pressed, and every effort made to annoy the enemy by such batteries as bear upon their working parties and liness, an attempt in which, I have reason to think, we have been to a considerable extent successful. The condition of the new batteries is known to the commanding general and will be mentioned in the succeeding report. The garrisons at Batteries Wagner and Gregg have been relieved as regularly as possible with our means of transportation.
On the 22nd, Brigadier-General Taliaferro relieved Brigadier-General Hagood. On the 26th [25th], Brigadier-General Colquitt relieved Brigadier-General Taliaferro. Brigadier-General Colquitt was relieved on the 28th by Brigadier-General Clingman, and the last was relieved on August 1 by Colonel L. M. Keitt.
The fire from the land batteries of the enemy upon Batteries Wagner and Gregg has been annoying, especially upon our communication by steamer between Fort Sumter and Cumming's Point.
The casualties which have occurred from July 20 to 31, inclusive, have been 13 killed and 49 wounded. I have the honor to inclose the returns and lists.*
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
R. S. RIPLEY,
Brigadier General THOMAS JORDAN,
Chief of Staff.
* But this included 8 men of Lucas' battalion included in statement for July 19 - 23. See Numbers 20.