War of the Rebellion: Serial 046 Page 0721 Chapter XL. ENGAGEMENT IN CHARLESTON HARBOR, S. C.

Search Civil War Official Records

On Tuesday morning, at 8.30 [o'clock], Colonel [William] Butler ordered me to open fire upon the monitor aground off Cumming's Point, which was done, and continued until 11 shots had been fired. By this time a second monitor had come within closer range than any had ever before ventured, and I turned my fire upon her with 20-pounder cartridges and wrought-iron bolts. I continued to fire deliberately at this monitor until I received an order from Colonel Butler to open on the Ironsides, when she got in range, with the wrought-iron bolts. I think I fired 5 or 6 shots at her at about from 4o to 5o elevation, when I discovered that the band through which the vent passes had given way about 8 or 10 inches below the vent on the right, and the next band in rear of this had given way on the left near the breach trunnion band. I ceased firing and reported the fact to Colonel Butler.

In the afternoon, by General Ripley's order, I fired at her with a 13-pounder cartridge at he grounded monitor, and struck her directly upon her bow deck. The shot seemed to have penetrated, for it was not observed to ricolet. Unfortunately, however, this discharge cracked the breach open in a plane passing vertically through the vent.

Respectfully,

R. Y. DWIGHT,

Lieutenant 1st S. C. [Regular] Inf., [3rd Art.,] Commanding Battery.

Captain [W. F.] NANCE,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

[P. S.]-I omitted to state that the columbiads under immediate charge of Lieutenant Singleton have done admirable firing in the late actions with the enemy assaulting Fort Sumter at 2 o'clock this morning. The crack and gear attachment for traversing being out of order, prevented the other being traversed so far to the west.

[Indorsement.]

SULLIVAN' S ISLAND, September 9, 1863.

Respectfully forwarded. Lieutenant Dwight states in this report that I sent order to him to use wrought-iron bolts. This is a mistake. I sent a message to him by Lieutenant Creswell, ordnance officer, to turn his gun upon the Ironsides if she came nearer. This vessel was then moving in about 1,500 yards distant. I sent only such a message as I would have done with reference to any other gun, supposing that he would be guided by the instructions that he had received concerning this gun. If the officer who bore the message gave any other directions, it was done without my authority.

WILLIAM BUTLER,

Colonel, Commanding.

Numbers 7. Report of Captain Thomas A. Huguenin, Third South Carolina Artillery.

BEAUREGARD BATTERY, September 9, 1863.

SIR: I have the honor to report that yesterday morning the enemy's fleet of iron-clads, consisting of the Ironsides and six moni-

46 R R-VOL XXVIII, PT I