War of the Rebellion: Serial 092 Page 0443 Chapter LVI. DEMONSTRATION AGAINST SAVANNAH R. R., S. C.

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by the lieutenant-General commanding on the 2nd instant, has been delayed because of my absence from my headquarters on other duty and the failure of some of the subordinate commanders to forward to me their reports. They have not all yet been received, but as I have been ordered to another and distant command, I respectfully submit, without longer delay, the following report:

The dispatch from the lieutenant-General commanding, then in Savannah, directing me to establish my headquarters or near Pocataligo, was received in this city about sunset on the 4th ultimo. I started by the first train, but owing to detention on the road did not reach Pocotaligo until nearly sunset on the 5th. I was road not informed as to the number, description, or location of the troops in that vicinity, and immediately endeavored to obtain information on those points. I ascertained that the troops, with the exception of the Fifty and Forty-seventh Georgia Regiments, a battalion of the Thirty-second Georgia Regiment, the artillery, a part of the Third South Carolina Cavalry, and Kirk's squadron, were composed of Georgia and South Carolina reserves and South Carolina militia, and occupied positions extending from Pocotaligo to Savannah River, and up that river beyond Sister's Ferry. Those at and near Grahamville were commanded by Brigadier-General Chesnut; those at and near Coosawhatchie, by Brigadier-General Gartwell. They had arrived but a few days previously, and until my arrival were under the immediate orders of the lieutenant-General commanding, or other officer under him. The reserves were very imperfectly organized, and the militia without organization, and many of the men were without arms. Having obtained as accurate information as I could of their numbers and position, and the position and movements of the enemy, I ordered Brigadier-General Chesnut to send the Forty-seventh Georgia Regiment and a section of artillery by railroad, to be thrown thence to any point that might be threatened, the train to remain at Coosawhatchie and be held in readiness to move the troops at any moment. This order, I regret to say, was not promptly obeyed. Dispatches received during the night indicated that the enemy was threatening Coosawhatchie by way of Bee's Creek and the Coosawhatchie River.,

At 10 o'clock the morning of the 6th General Gartrell telegraphed me, that the enemy was landing from twelve barges at Gregory's Point, on Tullifinny River; that he had moved forward a part of his force to meet them. The battalion of South Carolina cadets, having arrived at Pocotaligo, were ordered to guard the Tullifinny trestle and aid in checking any advance on Coosawhatchie. A section of artillery, supported by the battalion of the Thirty-second Thirty-second Georgia Regiment, was ordered to a point of the left of the Tullifinny, from which it was thought it could drive off or annoy the enemy's transports and barges, and I started myself to ride to Coosawhatchie; but before reaching Tullifinny bridge, the enemy, having landed in much larger force than was at first supposed, had pressed forward up Gregory's Neck to the Coosawhatchie or State road, and having driven back a battalion of the Fifth Georgia Regiment (about 150 men), interposed between me and Coosawhatchie.

Brigadier-General Gartrell has not submitted a report, but I ascertained from a conversation with him and his subordinate commanders that on first receiving information of the advance of the enemy he sent forward only a small battalion (150 men) of the Fifth Georgia, which encountered the enemy on the Gregory's Point road, about a mile from its junction with the State road, and drove back the advance guard.