War of the Rebellion: Serial 046 Page 0378 S. C. AND GA. COASTS, AND IN MID. AND E. FLA. Chapter XL.

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[Indorsement.]

HDQRS. DEPT. OF SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA,

Charleston, S. C., August 7, 1863.

Respectfully forwarded for the information of the War Department. In view of the possibility that Batteries Wagner and Gregg which are only outworks, mounting, respectively, twelve and three guns, might fall under the concentrated fire of the enemy's numerous and powerful land and naval batteries, I determined, immediately after the fall of the south end of Morris Island into the possession of the enemy, to establish a circle of batteries from Legare's Point, on Schooner Creek, James Island, to Battery Beauregard, on Sullivan's Island, so as to concentrate their fire (including Forts Sumter and Moultrie) on Morris Island for about half its length to Cumming's Point, and render that portion of the island untenable to the enemy, should he succeed in driving us away from it. That defensive system is now being carried out to the extent of our available means in labor and heavy ordnance. Manay of the long-range guns in Sumter not absolutely required for its defense have been removed, to arm the new batteries under construction. The remaining guns are being protected with traverses, merlons, and embrasures. The officers' quarters on the gorge of the fort (south face) have been filled up with wet cotton bags and sand, and a chemise of sand-bags is being added to the scarp wall of the same face, to extend, if practicable, from bottom to top. The defective lines on James Island are also to be shortened by the construction of a new line of redans and redoubts from Secessionville to the Stono River, long since contemplated, but not executed for want of labor. Herewith are papers marked A,* B, C, D, E, and F, connected with the defense of Morris Island during the present attack.

G. T. BEAUREGARD,

General, Commanding.

[Inclosure B.]

HDQRS. DEPT. OF SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA,

Charleston, July 15, 1863.

It is reported Gillmore will open fire in morning and attempt assault afterward. Will be assisted by fleet. Be on watch and prepared.

THOMAS JORDAN,

Chief of Staff.

[Indorsement.]

Send the above dispatch to Colonel Rhett, Fort Sumter, and Brigadier-General Taliaferro, Morris Island.

H. H. ROGERS,

Aide-de-Camp.

[Inclosure C.]

HDQRS. 1ST MIL. DIST., DEPT. OF S. C., GA., AND FLA.,

Charleston, S. C., July 19, 1863.

General RIPLEY, Commanding Fort Sumter:

Do the best that you can to get fresh troops on the island. Enemy possibly so punished that he may give no annoyance early to-morrow. Make the best, at least.

THOMAS JORDAN,

Chief of Staff.

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* Inclosure A is a tracing from Coast Survey map of Morris Island. It will appear in Atlas.

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