War of the Rebellion: Serial 092 Page 0543 Chapter LVI. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. --UNION.

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Port Royal Harbor, S. C., November 24, 1864.

Major General J. G. FOSTER,

Commanding Dept. of the South, Headquarters Hilton Head:

GENERAL: The following is extracted from a communication by the senior naval officer at Stono:

I have visited the water line in our front, and find the enemy are active. They are repairing the bridge leading on John's Island, and appear to be at work back in the woods on the island. Their pickets have been also strengthened along the water front. Last night one of our picket-boats discovered a large boat of the enemy near the mouth of the Kiawah River. They retreated as soon as discovered. I have pulled up the creek on the north side of Cole's Island to the fort and sounded the creek as I passed up at half tide. I found from five to two and a half fathoms of water all the way; at the mouth in Folly River, thirteen feet. I see nothing to prevent the enemy, with ordinary sagacity, using the creek. Our fort is mounted with small smooth-bore guns, so near a bend in the creek the enemy would be close on them before discovered on a dark night.

My force there now is much weaker than I like, but it is the best I can do, as the work off Charleston requires every steamer I can muster, and more, too. The wear and tear of incessant service keeps so many under repair. The vessels now in Stono are the McDonough (engine not usable, being under repair), a small steamer (Sweetbrier), and a mortar schooner. Another mortar schooner is on the way to Stono.

I am, General, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Rear-Admiral, Commanding South Atlantic Blockading Squadron.


Port Royal, November 24, 1864.

General J. G. FOSTER:

GENERAL: I have your note of to-day, and shall certainly and gladly render all the aid in my power to General Sherman. I think I can muster twenty to thirty 12-pounder boat guns, on field carriages, smooth and rifled. Of vessels, I may say two iron-clads, not including those on blockade at Charleston and Wassaw, with a dozen steamers of light draft and moderate draft, but many of them with very light guns.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


Rear-Admiral, Commanding, &c.



Ball's Ferry, November 25, 1864.

The Fourth Division, Brigadier-General Corse commanding, will march from its present camp at 7 a. m. to-morrow, taking the direct road to Ball's Ferry, making that place its destination.

* * * * * * *

By order of Major General P. Joseph Osterhaus:


Assistant Adjutant-General.