Second. At Jacksonville: Fort Sammon, one 8-inch sea-coast howitzer, one 8-inch siege howitzer, one 24 James, one 8-inch mortar; total, four. Fort Fribley, one 8-inch naval howitzer, two 30-pounders, one 8-inch siege howitzer, one 8-inch mortar; total, five. Fort Reed, one 8-inch sea-coast howitzer; one 30-pounder two 42-pounder carronades; one mortar; total, five. Total, fourteen.
March 21, grand total of permanent garrison artillery on north bank of Saint John's seventeen. This excludes four 24-pounder howitzers and two 20-pounder parrotts indicated as a reserve force, and not to be put in position unless in case of attack; also all the field batteries in the command. It will be seen that except the three 8-inch guns, all these cannon are siege, and be promptly moved wherever the major-general commanding may direct and whenever he may desire. But I would not recommend that any of these seventeen guns should be removed unless necessary, as I consider them a minimum armament. Yet the 8-inch siege howitzers and the 30-pounder Parrotts might be supplied by field guns at the option of the major-general commanding.
Of these seventeen guns it may be observed that the two 18-pounders, the two 42-pounder carronades, and 32-pounder carronade, total five guns, have not been, I believe, employed elsewhere, so that only twelve of what may be considered as the permanent artillery armament have been really withdrawn from the parks elsewhere. I take it for granted that the reserve force, six guns, can be taken from here at any moment.
As to bringing guns from Saint Augustine, I would state that there is a very heavy, and in some respects useless, armament at Fort Marion, that it cannot be attached while we hold Palatka and Jacksonville, that several iron field guns ion Gribeauval carriages can be spared from there with the most perfect propriety, and that Yellow Bluff requires two such guns, while two more could be os placed here as to liberate two field pieces of more importance.
I understood that these works were to be armed in the most economical manner possible. I believe that they will be so armed, but ask that the Saint Augustine guns be put to this suggested use in order that the best possible security be given to the works on the west bank of the Saint John's, which security is absolutely essential.
And I would add that all except the seventeen guns and mortars herein designated, and the old field guns asked from Saint Augustine, may be removed thereafter at the discretion of the major-general commanding, and without causing the least anxiety on my part as to want of efficiency of armament. At present I hardly think the removal of any of the captured guns, which will do for reserve, is desirable.
Respectfully, your obedient servant,
OFFICE OF MEDICAL, DIRECTOR, DIST. OF FLORIDA,
Jacksonville, Fla., March 21, 1864.
Brigadier General T. SEYMOUR,
U. S. Army:
GENERAL: Since I have been at this post I have had conversation with various medical officers in regard to the late action at Olustee,