War of the Rebellion: Serial 046 Page 0509 Chapter XL. OPERATIONS ON MORRIS ISLAND, S.C.

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E. J. White. I arrived at said point at 8 p.m. on the same evening, and took charge. Five shovels and 15 wheelbarrows were all the tools turned over to me. Verbal instructions were extended to strengthen with earth the covering of T-iron over gun-chamber No. 2, to be used as a bomb-proof, and to repair damages, generally, made by the enemy. Of material, I collected during my tour 15 shovels and 500 sand-bags from the neighboring sand-hills. All engineer property I then immediately put under guard, and upon being relieved by Lieutenant [Alexander] Gillon I turned over the same, under guard, together with full and definite instructions received from Mr. White and yourself during your visits in my tour of duty. These instructions, besides being personally explained, were written out. During my tour of nine days, from the evening of the 2nd to the evening of the 11th, I made two daily requisitions on assistant adjutant-general for working parties of 100 each. These working parties were never regularly furnished. Four of my requisitions were never complied with for day work, and five for night work, making nine in all, and showing an estimate of one-half lost in time and labor. This failure to meet my demands, I was informed by assistant adjutant-general, resulted from insufficiently in numbers, and exhausted condition of troops on duty on the island. The work completed in my tour was receding of chamber with sand-bags for 10-inch mortar; also the infantry parapet adjoining, with gabions of rice tierces topped with sand-bags; the covering of gun-chamber No. 2, with 4 feet of sand, and repairing of slight damages generally. I would here call your attention to slow process of covering gun-chamber No. 2, thereby explaining why not sooner finished. There is but one stepladder to Battery Gregg, the height is 17 feet. The relief parties have never been over 37, and the bags conveying the sand cannot be more than half filled, on account of the height of the re-enforce.

The following are observations from my daily journal from 3rd to 10th, inclusive:

On 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th the fire of the enemy in the morning averaged some 8 solid shots from Parrott battery at the Pines, evidently intended for Gregg, but mostly falling short from 50 to 100 yards. On corresponding evenings, the same fires averaged some 15 rifle shells, the range being changed so as to intercept communication between Sumter and Cumming's Point. Only one casualty in this period-a private leg lost. Our reply to the enemy up to the 6th was only an occasional one with solid shot, averaging 4 per day. This arose from a want of shells for the 9-inch Dahlgren.

On 3rd, at 8.30 p.m. witnessed signal rocket of enemy from Black Island Creek.

On 4th, at 4 a.m., the Passaic, and Battery Gregg exchanged 4 shots, one of the former (an 11-inch shell) bounding on the parapet and rolling gently into Columbiad chamber No. 2 without exploding. This columbiad was then in action under Lieutenant [George E.] Haynsworth, First Regiment South Carolina Artillery. On the 4th, at 9 p.m., heard report and witnessed flash of musketry in Black Island Creek, which resulted in capturing enemy's signal boat.

On evening of 5th was attracted by a flash and report of a gun in harbor off Gregg; proved to be the Juno capturing another of the enemy's signal boats.

On the 6th, the Parrott battery made 4 line shots for steamer working on harbor obstructions; 3 fell short and the fourth passed beyond and to the rear of the her stern.