Clark's Bay and is still going up, or with a view to occupy this island and erect batteries to enfilade the new lines erected on James Island should they wish to repeat their former attempt on James Island, they have certainly two regiments and two companies on Subrace Island; that much shown-probably a much larger force. They occupy all their old picket posts and new ones besides, and they are rebuilding the bridge from Kiawah, where they have from time to time (as reported) been landing troops from steamers. They will then have no difficulty in crossing their troops over to Subrace Island at any time of tide. All chance of attacking the gunboats and destroying the observatory has been lost, and I now respectfully request that another company (Captain [P. W.] Goodwyn's) be sent to re-enforce the force over here-reduced nearly one-half by absence from sickness during the course of the past sickly season-and that I be allowed to retain, at least temporarily, this section of the artillery.
Major, Commanding Advanced Forces.
Captain [CHARLES] WOOD,
P. S.-I omitted to mention that we drove in their pickets to the woods.
CAMP FRIPP, November 15, 1863.
CAPTAIN: The enemy have reoccupied Subrace Island in large force, and came near capturing our pickets this morning. They landed troops from a steamer which came in the North Edisto last night. They also crossed from Kiawah Island at low water. They are repairing the bridge which connects Kiawah with Subrace Island. I advanced with all the men I could muster, with the hope it, but they occupied the woods near the bridge with too heavy a force for my feeble command to effect that object. They advanced from the woods as we approached, but a shell bursting among them checked their advance. They fired with howitzers and Parrott guns from Kiawah Island, near the bridge.
I was informed this morning, while on my way to headquarters, by the couriers, that one company had advanced to capture dour pickets this morning. I did not think it worth while to trouble you about so small a matter, and did not ascertain their strength until they unmasked it to some extront this afternoon. Two stand of colors were shown; 5 field officers (with one regiment) on horseback. This is an explanation of my not having sent dispatches earlier in the day.
The report from Stono is that at 8.30 o'clock a schooner left, going north; at 10 o'clock a small steamer carried troops to Kiawah Island. There are eleven schooners, three steamers, three brigs, and two gunboats in the harbor.
Captain CHARLES WOOD,