War of the Rebellion: Serial 077 Page 0410 KY., SW. VA., TENN., MISS., ALA., AND N. GA. Chapter LI.

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proaches and breaching batteries-was contemplated. We had not the means, nor was it deemed necessary. An emergency temporarily directed 3,000 of the force to another point, leaving only 1,500 men for the expedition, and the following change was made in the plan: The whole force, including all the artillery, to land on Dauphin Island and go into position against Fort Gaines, as had been proposed against Fort Morgan, the fleet (a portion of it having run into the bay) from the sound, the bay, and the anchorages outside, concentrating all its efforts against Gaines and Powell. The fall of one or both of these forts would open communications with the portion of the fleet inside, and enable us (re-enforcements arriving) to enter the bay with troops, effect a landing at Pilot Town from the cove, and then to proceed against Morgan exactly as proposed in the first plan.

We landed on Dauphin Island, seven miles from Fort Gaines, at 4 p. m. on the 3rd of August. On the 4th, at 10 a. m., our line of sentinels being within 1,200 yards of the fort, I established a line of intrenchments and batteries across the island (see sketch herewith), and at 4 p. m. work was commenced. During the night we got up six 3-inch Rodman guns and put them in position in the sand ridge.

On the 5th, at sunrise, the fleet (four monitors and fourteen wooden ships-twelve wooden ships and gun-boats remained outside the bar) started on its way by the forts, and we opened fire upon Fort Gaines with the 3-inch guns. The fort replied warmly but did no damage. Three monitors and the fourteen ships reached the bay in safety. After the entrance of the fleet, and while it was engaged with the ram Tennessee, Fort Gaines opened upon it within two 10- inch columbiads, which bore upon the scene of action. These we shortly silenced by our field guns from the sand-hills, which saw the columbiads (unprotected by parados or traverses) fairly in reserve and flank.

On the 6th the double-turreted monitor Winnebago, four 11-inch guns, approached to a half mile of Fort Gaines, and opened fire upon it with very good effect, bursting many shells over it and taking the opposite sides of the fort well in reserve (no parados or traverses). The fort replied with two 10-inch guns, but did not hit the monitor. At night Fort Powell was blown up and abandoned by the enemy.

On the 7th we were nearly ready to open fire with four 30-pounders and the six field guns, and the infantry trench was nearly complete, giving considerable cover.

On the 8th, at 10 a. m., Fort Gaines surrendered to our combined land and naval forces unconditionally. The garrison consisted of 818 officers and men. The armament was four 10-inch columbiads, two 7-inch Brooke rifles, twelve or fifteen smooth-bores (24s and 32d), and five or six flank casemate howitzers. There was an abundant supply of ammunition and rations for two months. Two 10-inch guns and six 24s bore upon the land approach.

I found the fort in excellent order, finished fully up to the plan in possession of our Engineer Department, a copy of which I have, but with its guns lying over the crest of the parapet, without merlons, traverses, or parados for their protection, or splinter- proofs for the protection of the cannoneers. It was utterly weak and inefficient against our attack (land and naval), which would have taken all its fronts in front, enfilade, and reserve. With our guns in the sand ridge we could have placed every shot upon the terre-pleins of the opposite fronts. This sand ridge (indicated on the Coast Survey maps) extends along the southern shore of the island, and affords a perfect cover up to a point about 400 yards from the fort. Its height varies between fifteen and thirty