SULLIVAN'S ISLAND, September 28, 1863.
Major General W. H. C. WHITING:
GENERAL: I have learned from Fort Sumter that from General Ripley's examination yesterday of the enemy's works (I have not myself been in Sumter for some weeks), he has become satisfied from the position of the enemy's guns-being protected by high traverses against the fire of this island, and being directed toward the inner harbor chiefly-that they will not attack us on Sullivan's Island at all. He also says that the guns in Wagner are chiefly directed seaward, as if to guard against an attack from the sea. It is his impression also that when their batteries are completed, they will probably send off their monitors, and retain only the Ironsides and some wooden vessels.
I think it probable, from the news of this morning from the north, that they will shortly direct the fire of their guns on the city to destroy it. I should not be surprised, therefore, if the monitors hold go up to give you some trouble at Wilmington. The number of vessels that are running the blockade there, and other things, will make them very anxious to interfere there. If they do not design an immediate attack here, they may also send a pat of their land forces up to endeavor to close that harbor. I make these suggestions because I know your force is small.
I see from the indorsement of the Secretary of War on Radcliffe's application for his companies that he thinks it was dangerous for you to send my brigade here. As far as I am personally concerned, I am well situated here, in command of this sub-division, as I have been for some weeks on the most exposed point, and with twelve infantry regiments under my command, besides the large artillery force on the heavy batteries, as well as light artillery and cavalry.
As this island is considered a very dangerous place, I do not think any of the other generals here covet it, and I can probably remain here indefinitely. If, however, I cannot be actively engaged here, if the enemy attack Wilmington, I should be willing to go there, and I think my observation of affairs here has been of service to me, and that I could do better now than before I came in a fight of batteries against iron-clads.
T. L. CLINGMAN,
HDQRS. DEPT. S. C., GA., AND FLA., Numbers 196.
Charleston, S. C., September 28, 1863.
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V. The battalion of South Carolina Cadets, under Major J. B. White, are hereby relieved from duty in this city. In relieving this battalion, the commanding general tenders his thanks to the cadets and their officers for the promptness with which they responded to his call, and their zeal and discipline while under his orders. Should the enemy threaten a land attack on this city, they will be again called upon to assist in its defense. Meanwhile, they will return to their appropriate duties, daily more and more qualifying themselves for the important positions to which they may ere long be called, in the defense of their county.
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By command of General Beauregard:
JNO. M. OTEY,