War of the Rebellion: Serial 092 Page 0586 OPERATIONS IN S. C., GA., AND FLA. Chapter LVI.

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permission to send communication to General Wheeler, who is now in my immediate front, informing him of these facts, that I have prisoners of rank who I intend to retain as hostages, and will retaliate.

STEAMER NEMAHA, Port Royal, November 30, 1864.

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

Chief of Staff, U. S. Armies:

GENERAL: I have the honor to report that I landed General Hatch, with a small force, yesterday at Boyd's Neck, opposite Whale Island, Broad River, with orders to push on and destroy the railroad near Grahamville. When I left the landing, at 4 p. m., he was four miles out at the intersection of the roads. Had it not been for the ignorance and inefficiency of our pilots, we should have reached the landing at daylight and been enabled to destroy the road yesterday. Afternt at Gopher Hill, General Hatch is ordered to destroy the bridge to the southwest, and thus to march with his whole force and attack the work guarding the Coosawhatchie bridge. Admiral Dahlgren has contributed to our force quite a regiment of sailors and marines, with six pieces of artillery.

Very respectfully,

J. G. FOSTER,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,

Hilton Head, S. C., November 30, 1864.

Major-General FOSTER,

Commanding Department:

GENERAL: In accordance with instructions contained in your letter to me of this date, directions were again sent to the pickets to look out for the escaped prisoners; also, to all boats on picket duty around the island. Not knowing where to communicate with the naval picket-boat (which your letter informed me the admiral was to send), I proceeded to the New Hampshire (the admiral being absent,), and was told by Captain Reynolds that no picket-boats had been sent out by the admiral. The telegraph cable to Fort Pulaski was not mended; there was no operator to establish a station at the end of the island, and no one of the signal corps at Fort Pulaski to receive a message by signals. I therefore sent a letter to Colonel Brown, commanding at the fort, through Major Thomas, by the steamer Eliza Hancox. Three of the escaped rebels have been recaptured and brought in; all efforts are being made to secure the others.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

W. B. DEAN,

Lieutenant and Acting Assistant Adjutant-General.

HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,

Hilton Head, S. C., November 30, 1864.

Captain PRATT,

Provost-Marshal:

CAPTAIN: I am not satisfied with the performance of duty by the guards at the time the six rebel officers escaped. The derelict parties