War of the Rebellion: Serial 046 Page 0489 Chapter XL. OPERATIONS ON MORRIS ISLAND, S.C.

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fire on Battery Wagner, combining with the enemy's land and mortar batteries, which had opened nearly half an hour sooner. At the first shot from the Ironsides, nearly all the infantry were hurried to the bomb-proof, leaving light detachments to guard the parapet and act as sharpshooters. Full detachments of artillery were kept at the guns on the land front. The fire of the Ironsides proved very destructive and had a rather depressing effect on many of the garrison, to whom it was a novelty. It ceased for awhile at 7.45 a.m., but was renewed at about 8.30 a.m., and continued briskly until nearly 3 p.m. Even after that, she fired occasionally during the afternoon. She was assisted during part of the morning by one monitor. As the Ironsides lay some 1,400 yards off, with the monitors in easy supporting distance, I deemed it our policy simply to endure this bombardment, keeping prepared to meet an assault. Bacon and crackers were taken, under fire, from the commissary depot to the sally-port, and the men directed to help themselves. the tent-cloth covering to the commissary stores was fired by a shell, but extinguished by J. A. Stewart, commissary sergeant, assisted by Major Bryan. Two wagon-loads of cartridges in boxes were brought up from Cumming's Point, under the hottest fire, and safely stored in the magazine, though one of the mules was killed while this was going on. The enemy's fire of 100 and 200 pounder Parrott guns was principally directed against the left salient of the battery, the prolongation of the line passing over my headquarters. It first began to to tell heavily on the traverse (marked D on the accompanying plan* of Battery Wagner) in front of the stairs leading from the salient to the passage below between the bomb-proof and the magazine. In a few hours this fire knocked down the traverse, filling up the stairway with its debris, and thus cutting off all communication with the salient except through the parade. Captain T. B. Lee, engineer in charge, considered it unadvisable to attempt to prevent the filling up of the stairway mentioned. Lieutenant [H.] Montgomery, [jr.,] Twenty-fifth South Carolina, was killed, in the passage, by a fragment of shell, during this transition.

The enemy's fire of rifled guns was next observed to tel most particularly upon the parapet on the right of the salient mentioned, and on the end of the bomb-proof in line with it. The gradual effect during the day was to knock this parapet out of shape with at least one breach, and to throw sand from it forward upon the bomb-proof. In its turn, the bomb-proof was plowed with deep furrows at its end, and much sand thrown forward, a considerable quantity falling in rear of the chamber of 32-pounder gun on sea face. Another effect of the frequent jar of land and sea fire was to throw down portions of the sand covering the galleries (marked E, F, and G in plan*) which connect the magazines on the sea face with the bomb-proof. This threatened to choke up the two galleries toward the sally-port, and, in spite of the engineer in charged, did choke up the entrance leading from 32-pounder gun chamber to the gallery nearest the salient. Thus, to get to the southeast magazine (B) it became necessary to go through the bomb-proof, and most of the powder in this magazine was moved out as a precaution.

When the Ironsides ceased fire, about 3 p.m., I ordered a portion of the men out of the bomb proof, as two or three had fainted, and others were likely to lose their strength from the heat and close air.


*Not found.