the fact that to secure these points as far as possible the whole of my right flank is weakened, and I have not a man available for the support of the garrisons at Rose Dew, Beaulieu, and Isle of Hope in case of attack. The indubitable truth is that with so few men scattered over so much ground we can hardly resist a coup de main anywhere, for there are no reserves that we can call upon. The fact is that on the day of the attack, by collecting all the forces not absolutely necessary to guard other points, I could not have assembled more than 500 men for the defense of Whitemarsh, and that only after considerable delay, owing to distances and want of transportation across the river.
R. E. COLSTON,
Captain G. A. MERCER,
A. A. G.
Savannah, February 29, 1864.
Having been present, I confirm the report of General Colston, and beg to call particular attention to the exposed and defenseless condition of Whitemarsh Island.
H. W. MERCER,
HDQRS. DEPT. OF S. CAROLINA, GEORGIA, AND FLORIDA,
Charleston, S. C., March 26, 1864.
Respectfully forwarded to the War Department, for its information.
Brigadier-General Colston mentions in his report that a portion of the Fifty-seventh Georgia Regiment behaved badly. He complains of the total inadequacy of the force at his command to resist these raids, and says that if he had brought every available man to the defense of Whitemarsh Island he could not have mustered more than 500 men. He compliments Colonel Pritchard, Captain Turner, and Lieutenant Richardson, commanding artillery section.
G. T. BEAUREGARD,
MARCH 1, 1864.-Skirmishes at Cedar and McGirt's Creek, Fla.
No. 1.-Colonel Guy V. Henry, Fortieth Massachusetts Mounted Infantry, commanding Light Brigade.
No. 2.-Major Atherton H. Stevens, jr., Fourth Massachusetts Cavalry.
No. 3.-Lieutenant Michael Leahy, Battery B, First U. S. Artillery.
No. 1. Report of Colonel Guy V. Henry, Fortieth Massachusetts Mounted Infantry, commanding Light Brigade.
HEADQUARTERS LIGHT BRIGADE, March 26, 1864.
LIEUTENANT: I have the honor to make the following report of the action of March 1, 1864.:
At 9 a.m. on that day I sent a reconnoitering party, consisting of the battalion Fourth Massachusetts Cavalry, one squadron Fortieth