War of the Rebellion: Serial 066 Page 0015 CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION. Chapter XLVII.

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draught, well armed, may be supplied for this purpose. And if a small, very light draught steamer (4 feet) can be supplied for running into the small streams that empty into the Saint John's and into the shallow waters at the head of the river, it will be of the greatest possible value. I trust such may be captured here, but it is too doubtful to be relied upon.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

T. SEYMOUR,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF FLORIDA,

Jacksonville, Fla., March 9, 1864.

Brigadier-General TURNER, Chief of Staff:

GENERAL: I have this morning decided to occupy Palatka without longer delay, and have accordingly ordered Colonel Barton to proceed to the place to-night; his command is strengthened by fire companies of the Fifty-fifth Massachusetts (Colonel Hartwell) and two sections of James' battery. Lieutenant Michie accompanies Colonel Barton, with instructions to throw up such defensive works as may be necessary, and to be held by a minimum garrison of about 500. Colonel Barton is instructed to send a force to Orange Springs, if on his arrival he shall ascertain that a steamer is there, and that there is no body of the enemy to oppose materially, and with a view to obtaining possession of light-draught vessel. As no cavalry can be spared from here, Captain James will mount, for this purpose, as many of his drivers as can be spared. The Columbine, to be followed immediately by the Ottawa, will convoy the transports. It is believed that there are many would-be loyal persons who will resort to us for protection when Palatka is known to be permanently occupied.

Respectfully, general, your obedient servant,

T. SEYMOUR,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

[Indorsement.]

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,

Hilton Head, March 12, 1864.

Palatka should be fortified so that the position can be held against great odds. A field-works, inclosed with a formidable obstacle on all sides, will perhaps suffice, and no offensive operations involving the possibility of a defeat should be undertaken until these defense are in an efficient condition.

Q. A. GILLMORE,

Major-General, Commanding.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,

Hilton Head, S. C., March 10, 1864.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief, U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.:

SIR: I have to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 26th ultimo, * in reply to mine of the 13th and 16th. I certainly failed to make myself understood, if I conveyed the idea that I considered

* See Part I, p. 493.