not be completed until about 4 p.m., I made my arrangements to camp at the junction of the Hardeeville and Charleston roads. at about 2 p.m. the head of my column closely. I expected the remainder of my division would arrive without serious difficulty. About this time I received a communication from Major-General Logan directing me to assume command of the Third and Fourth Divisions, when the orderly informed me that the balance of the troops were on the island and could not come forward, owing to the condition of the roads.
I sent a staff officer to communicate with General Corse, and on the morning of the 20th sent the pioneer corps of the Third and Fourth Divisions, but they found it impossible to join the troops on the island, the road between the rice fields and them being covered with water to the depth of four feet. I rode back, intending to reach Savannah by Screven's Ferry, but found it impossible to get nearer than two miles. I had, however, upon learning the situation of the troops on the island, ordered Colonel McCown, commanding First Brigade, that if he could not get the wagons out to abandon them and return with the men and animals as speedily as possible.
Upon my return from my attempt to communicate by way of Screven's Ferry I met Captain Wellman, whom I had sent to General Corse. He informed me that the troops had been ordered to return to Savannah by Major-General Logan, a dn that he thought but few wagons would have to be abandoned. He also brought directions from Major-General Logan to push through to this place the best I could. I accordingly broke camp at 7 a.m. on the 21st instant, marching through water not deep enough for navigation, but too deep to say we came by land.
It has rained incessantly from 12 m. of the 19th to 10 a.m. this date.
The officers and men were very patient; to be cheerful was beyond human nature. I have with me the Second Brigade, composed of three regiments; Battery B, First Michigan Artillery, and all of supply trains except twenty-seven wagons.
I am, captain, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JOHN E. SMITH,
WASHINGTON, D. C., January 23, 1865-9. 10 p.m.
Bring all your command to Washington, instead at New York, and report to General Augur for transports and orders.
H. W. HALLECK,
Major-General and Chief of Staff.
(Copies of General Augur and General Charles Thomas.)
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT AND ARMY OF THE TENNESSEE,
Beaufort, S. C., January 23, 1865.
Bvt. Major General W. B. HAZEN,
Commanding Second Division, Fifteenth Army Corps:
GENERAL: The Major-general commanding directs me to say that the wishes you to detail about 400 men to work on the road between this