As the new lines ordered may not be completed for some time, and I had occasion two days ago to notice the weakness of that part of the old lines near Royal's, the recommendations of Colonel Gonzales are approved, with this change: that the 32-pounder smooth-bore shall not be taken from Fort Johnson, but from Redoubt Numbers 1, eastern lines, where a gun of that caliber has to be replaced by an 8-inch shell gun from Battery Glover, as already ordered.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
CLIFTON H. SMITH,
HDQRS. DEPT. SOUTH CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA,
Charleston, S. C., August 15, 1863.
B. A. WHITENY, Esq.,
In Charge of Submarine Torpedo-Boat, Charleston, S. C.:
SIR: I am authorized to say that John Fraser & Co. will pay over to any parties who shall destroy the U. S. steam iron-clad Ironsides the sum of $100,000, a similar sum for the destruction of the wooden frigate Wabsh, and the sum of $50,000 for every monitor sunk.
I have reason to believe that other men of wealth will unite and give with earl magnificence toward the same end.
At the same time, steps are being taken the secure a large sum to be settled for the support of the families of parties, who, making any attempt against the fleet now attacking our outworks, shall fail in the enterprise, and fall or be captured in the attempt.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
Chief of Staff.
JAMES ISLAND, August 15, 1863.
Captain W. F. NANCE,
CAPTAIN: After much hesitation, I respectfully ask leave to lay before the brigadier-general commanding the difficulties meeting me in the Black Island expedition. I have carefully and anxiously considered the matter, stimulated both by my duty as an officer, and by my desire to gratify, if possible, the wish of the general, for his many acts of kindness to me. I am sure that he will not misunderstand me. The first difficulty, is landing. I find that the marsh, instead of being easily passed, is deep and boggy, and that for about 300 yards I must march the men through mud over their knees, and at time nearly waist deep, and this at the best time of tide. After landing we must meet the enemy in thick woods, for which I can get no guide. It will be almost impossible at night to keep the command in hand after landing them in a scattered and somewhat disorganized condition through the marsh, and then leading them through the thicket. If we drive the enemy from the island, or capture the picket, we must then proceed to cut down the trees. From all the information I can get, this will occupy 100 expert axmen from two to three days. In the present case, as we would be called upon to resist the enemy over their bridge, and in all probability to meet an attempt to land on their side, and at the same time be under fire from Morris Island and the inlet, I do not know how long it would take to clear the island. I have come to this conclusion most reluctantly.