by the signal corps, since it was almost entirely by this system that prompt connection was had by headquarters with the contiguous military and naval stations along the coast.
The general efficiency of the corps was always admirable, and there were very few circumstances (and those due to exceptional conditions of the atmosphere) under which the intent of the system could not be fully carried out.
In this department such a system is strictly indispensable, and the long distances that separate its posts are rapidly and successfully annihilated. The facility with which essential information is conveyed on the field of battle is one of the most valuable points to be considered, and few, if any, commanders can now afford to dispense with such assistance.
Briefly, I cannot conceive how large operations can be conducted without the signal corps. It has become inseparably a part of every superior command.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
Brigadier-General of Volunteers.
Abstract from return of the Department of the South Major General Quincy A. Gillmore, U. S. Army, commanding, for December, 1863; headquarters Hilton Head, S. C.
Present for duty.
Station and command. Officers. Men. Aggregate
General headquarters. 64 64 129
Seymour's command 247 6,620 8,394
Morris Island (Terry) 275 5,878 7,774
Folly Island (Vogdes and 259 8,164 11,313
Port Royal Island 120 2,624 3,618
Fernandina (Guss) 33 824 1,020
Saint Augustine (Osborn) 41 926 1,248
Total 1,039 25,100 33,506
Pieces of artillery.
Station and command. Aggregate Heavy. Field.
General headquarters. 131 ...... ......
Seymour's command 9,843 ...... 10
Morris Island (Terry) 9,243 ...... 4
Folly Island (Vogdes and 15,178 ...... 22
Port Royal Island 3,869 23 4
Fernandina (Guss) 1,064 ...... .......
Saint Augustine (Osborn) 1,442 19 ........
Total 40,770 42 40
2nd North Carolina (colored), from Folly Island to Fort Monroe, Va.
7th New Hampshire, from Morris Island to Saint Helena Island.
1st New York Engineers, Company G, from Morris Island to Folly Island, and Company K, from Beaufort to Hilton Head.
48th New York, Companies D and F, from Fort Pulaski to Hilton Head.
115th New York, from Beaufort to Hilton Head.
3rd Rhode Island Heavy Artillery, Company A, from Morris Island to Folly Island; Company C, from Gordon's division to Hilton Head, and Companies F, K, and L, from Hilton Head to Fort Pulaski.
1st U. S. Artillery, Battery C, from Morris Island to Fort Macon, N. C.
2nd U. S. Colored Troops, from Folly Island to New Orleans, La.