Fort Dushane. Lieutenant Heap inspected the line from Fort McGilvery to Fort Howard. The following extracts from the report of Brevet Colonel Spaulding, commanding detachment Fiftieth New York Volunteer Engineers, will show the engineering duty performed by his command for the last week:
The stockading of the gorges of the works on the Second and Sixth Corps lines, which was suspended at the time of the late move south of the Nottoway River, was resumed on the 20th instant, Brevet Major Folwell having charge of the works on the Sixth Corps line and Brevet McDonald of those on the Second Corps line. Major Folwell reports the work on the stockade at Fort Keene completed, and that the stockade at Batteries 24, 25 and 26 will be completed to-morrow. This work has been done by details of about twenty-five infantry from the Sixth Corps, and a sergeant of this regiment at each fort and battery. Major McDonald reports that the stockades at Forts Fishers, Welch, Gregg, Cummings, and Siebert are a little more than half done. He further states that the details on these works from the Second Corps affected so much ignorance of the use of tools and showed such a want of interest in the work, as induced him to dismiss these details and replace them by his own men. These stockades will probably be completed on Wednesday next. The signal tower near Fort Fisher was commenced by Brevet Major Hine on the 20th instant with one company of this command. This tower is designed to be 140 feet in height from the top of the sill to the upper platform, with a railing rising four feet above the platform. It will be forty-two and one half feet square at the top of the sill, and thirteen and one half feet square at the upper platform. It has been found advisable to have the timber got out by our own men. Thus far about one-sixth of the timber has been got out and hauled to the position selected. The framing has been commenced, and blacksmiths are at work upon the bolts required.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
J. C. DUANE,
Major of Engineers, Brevet Colonel, U. S. Army.
Bvt. Major General J. G. BARNARD,
Chief Engineer Armies in the Field, City Point, Va.
HDQRS. ARMY OF THE POTOMAC, ENGINEER DEPT.,
January 3, 1865.
GENERAL: Since the date of my report of the 26th ultimo, the following will exhibit the nature and extent of the engineering operations in this army performed by the officers and men of the engineer battalion and brigade for the week ending December 31, 1864:
Brevet Captain Benyaurd was in command of the Engineer Battalion until the 28th ultimo, and having obtained leave of absence on that date he turned over command to Brevet Captain Howell. This officer also had charge of the completion of the line from Fort Keene to Fort Urmston. Lieutenant Phillips inspected the line on First Division, Ninth Corps, front. The following extracts from the weekly report of Brevet Colonel Spaulding, commanding detachment Fiftieth New York Volunteer Engineers, are made:
The stockades at Batteries 24, 25 and 26, in charge of Brevet Major Folwell, were completed on the 24th by details from the Sixth Corps, superintended by sergeants of engineers. The stockades in Forts Fisher, Welch, Gregg, Cummings, and Siebert, in charge of Brevet Major McDonald, were completed on Wednesday, 28th, the work since last weekly report having been done by details from this command. On the 26th, 27th, 28th, and 29th Lieutenant Bacon, with four non-commissioned officers from this command and a detail of 200 men from the Sixth Corps, thoroughly repaired the corduroy road from general headquarters to the Jones house, putting in additional siding, and covering the whole with earth to an average depth of three inches. The work upon the signal tower has progressed during the week as rapidly as the state of the weather would permit. Brevet Major Hine reports that fully one-half the timber required is now one the ground, and that the carpenters' and blacksmiths' work upon the first section of sixty-eight feet is one-half done. The difficulty of