War of the Rebellion: Serial 046 Page 0382 S. C. AND GA. COASTS, AND IN MID. AND E. FLA. Chapter XL.

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the enemy, our transportation, which is already of the weakest kind, will soon be cup up, and when that is gone our first requisite for carrying out the defense of Charleston is taken from us. My means for effecting the object are in the guns of Sumter, Moultrie, Batteries Gregg and Wagner. Battery Wagner is of course crippled, Battery Gregg is weak in number and range of its guns compared with the enemy's Parrotts, and Sumter and Moultrie are 1,200 yards farther distant from the enemy than the landing at Cumming's Point. Moreover, from the scarcity of our naval force and its inactivity, the enemy infest the creeks and give signals of our operations. The necessity of some movable offensive means for the prevention of this annoyance is absolute, in my opinion.

One gun was put in position in Battery Wagner last night, and the other is in such a state that it will be in position, and in readiness for service in an hour or so after dark to-night, in all probability.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

R. S. RIPLEY,

Brigadier-General.

Brigadier General THOMAS JORDAN,

Chief of Staff, & c.

[Indorsements.]

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

Charleston, S. C., August 2, 1863.

Respectfully referred to the consideration of Captain J. R. Tucker, commanding C. S. naval forces, Charleston Harbor, with the remark that I consider it vital to the maintenance of my position on Morris Island that at least one of the iron-clad rams shall be stationed nightly to drive away such vessels as disturbed and interrupted our means of transportation last night.

G. T. BEAUREGARD,

General, Commanding.

Respectfully returned to General Beauregard, with the remark that, after an interview with General Ripley, he addressed a letter to General Jordan on the subject. I will be happy to enter into his views as expressed in that letter. Flag-Officer [D. N.] Ingraham, commanding station, Charleston, has informed me officially that he has but 80 tons of coal to meet all demands, including the iron-clads, and has admonished me of the necessity of economy in consumption. As our object in the expedition is secrecy, I have suggested the propriety, and General Ripley has agreed with me, that it would be best for the iron-clads to remain inside of Fort Sumter, ready to co-operate with the army. As the coal used by the vessels emits such a dense smoke, the object, secrecy, would be foiled.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

J. R. TUCKER,

Flag-Officer, Commanding Afloat.