the island a part of a regiment of dismounted cavalry. There are three (I think) 20-pounder Parrotts, one 30-pounder, and a battery of 3 1/2-inch ordnance rifled guns, in charge of the artillery company. It seems to me that the above gives all reasonable security against an aquatic raid. How can a gang of raiders get together in a friendly country vessels to carry men enough to overcome the guard, to encounter the artillery now on the island, or if successful in these things, how could they get their prisoners away?
With the permanent gaurd raised to a full regiment (as it should be) and the artillery force on the island, I think we have reasonable security, and that the light battery may be sent elsewhere.
During the recent alarm, the light battery was placed on Cedar Point, behind a rude and eapulement, and a detachment of the artillery company had charge of it. This point is unquestionably the key-point to the harbor defense, but with my ideas of the chance of maritime attack, it does not seem to me necessary. If a battery is kept up there hereafter (it is now withdrawn for the winter), it is proper it should be made secure. Surprise will be the main feature of the attack, and body of men strong enough to overcome the Johnson's Island guard will a fortiori, be more than strong enough to overpower and capture a fraction of a company of artillery (a landing being made on some point on the shore to the eastward). It will be a difficult and expensive matter to make the battery or epaulment itself an impassable obstacle, and unless that is done there is no use in closing its gorge. Short of these expensive measures, a strong block-house between the epaulment and the light-house would be required.
In the winter of 1837, during the "patriot war," a party of American sympathizers or Canadian refugees crossed from near the west shore of Sandusky Bay on the ice to Point Pelee Island. They were the met by a body of British troops coming from the Canadian shore (also on the ice), and a skirmish occurred. This suggests a species of raid uopn Johnston's Island within the bounds of probability, and makes more important the intended increase of the permanent guard, especially during the winter months.
As to raids having the object of destruction of property, I will mention, to illustrance my opinions as to defensive works, what seems to me on of the most feasible. From the pier and harbor of Buffalo to the Canadian shore the distance is not more than 2 miles. Two hundred bold them might conspire to meet on this Canadian shore, have three or four boats ready to embark in the night, land in the harbor, and, proceeding from one end to the other, set fire to all the elevators, shipping, &c. Against such a proceeding defensive works would be useless, or nearly so;for if we suppose batteries on the pier and shore, and a watch so perfect that the hostile approach could not be made unobserved (a thing really impossible),it would only increase somewhat the risks to the raiders by causing a landing at a more remote point. The end of the lake near Buffalo is frequently bridged by ice, suggesting another way of operating a raid of this character.
At Cleveland, Erie, Dunkirk, Toledo, and Sandusky, the most obvious methods of raiding would not differ much in general character, though perhaps each place would suggest somewhat different means of operating. Toledo, Sandusky, and Dunkirk may be approached by ice in winter. Cleveland and Erie probably cannot. While defensive works would not be a protection, all that they could