War of the Rebellion: Serial 096 Page 0571 Chapter LVIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC.-UNION.

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to see that officers and men are vigilant. If those men passed through my line it is certainly a humiliating fact and should be classed with a recent incident in the experience of pickets, where it is claimed that an iron-clad fleet passed through a picket-line without attracting their attention. I cannot discover that there has been any neglect of duty on the part of the officers and men on my picket-line.

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

SAM. HARRIMAN,

Colonel, Commanding Brigade.

[Inclosure.]

HDQRS. EIGHTH Regiment MICHIGAN VETERAN VOLUNTEERS,

Before Petersburg, Va., February 15, 1865.

Lieutenant E. R. CHASE,

Adjutant Eighth Regiment Michigan Veteran Volunteers:

SIR: I have the honor to report, in pursuance to orders received this evening, in regard to my tour of duty as officer of the picket on the night of February 12, 1865.

I was detailed as officer of the picket as above stated, and posted my pickets at or near 4 p. m. February 12, 1865, and gave them such instructions as I had received from the brigade officer of the day, which I believe were faithfully carried out. During the night I visited the different posts every hour and sometimes twice, and discovered nothing unusual; generally found the men on the alert and apparently doing their duty well. The night was extremely cold, which necessitated the men's unusual activity. No man, I think, felt disposed to sleep in consequence of the severity of the weather, and I do not think it possible for any one to have passed our lines without being observed, although such an incident may have occurred, but without my knowledge.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

WM. A. CLIFFORD,

Acting Lieutenant, Company B.

[Indorsement.]

HDQRS. EIGHTH MICHIGAN VETERAN VOL. INFANTRY,

Before Petersburg, Va., February 15, 1865.

Respectfully forwarded.

I have questioned the non-commissioned officers that were in charge of the two picket-posts, between which the two rebel deserters claimed to have passed the picket-line, and they agree in saying that the night being very windy there was a possibility of a man creeping in at the drain between the posts, but no great probability of such a thing happening. I am in the habit of visiting the regimental picket-line very nearly every night, and am very certain that the pickets of the Eighth Michigan Volunteers to their duty well.

R. N. DOYLE,

Major, Commanding Eighth Michigan Veteran Volunteer Infantry.

GENERAL TERRY'S HEADQUARTERS,

Fort Fisher, February 16, 1865.

General R. DELAFIELD,

Chief of Engineers, U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.:

SIR: I have been able at last to obtain some information as to the place of explosion of the powder-boat at Fort Fisher. Captain Arey,