will be landed and hauled across the beach into Masonborough Sound.
This being accomplished, the troops will cross in the small boats to the mainland.
The portion of the expedition which moves by sea is placed under the immediate command of Brigadier-General Comstock, whose orders will be strictly obeyed by all. The commanding general will accompany the main body of the troops, and will give orders for movements against the enemy after a landing is effected.
The boats will all be at the wharf at 4 o'clock this p. m. and report to General Comstock for orders. The troops to move by boat will report at the wharf at dark. The main body of the troops will march as soon as it is dark enough to conceal their movements from the enemy.
The utmost silence must be preserved by the troops during the movement, and on no account will fires be made or lights exhibited, either in the boats or ashore, by which the enemy might detect the movement. No straggling must be permitted.
The men will be supplied with three days' rations, and as much ammunition as they can carry on their persons. The officers should also carry with them three days' rations.
General Terry with the portion of his troops not included in this expedition will press the enemy closely, commencing at daylight in the morning, and will follow him vigorously if he gives way, or attack him if he weakens his line so much as to justify it.
The troops will carry with them a good supply of intrenching tools.
* * * *
By command of Major-General Schofield:
J. A. CAMPBELL.
Major and Assistant Adjutant-General.
MEMORANDUM.] FORT FISHER, February 12, 1865.
First. It is proposed to-night to send Daggett's brigade and Slosson's engineers, thirty pontoons, and some navy boats, to a point three miles south of Masonborough Inlet, called Big Hill; land them, haul the boats across the Myrtle Sound by hand; launch them and ferry across a column of troops which will move along beach to the same point. The gun-boat Wilderness will lead. The engineer troops must be afloat by dusk and follow her: the other troops to get afloat as soon as possible after dusk and follow, without other orders, the Wilderness to the point mentioned. Each steamer will tow some pontoons. The commanding officer will watch the pontoons carefully to see they are not injured. Will allow no lights on steamers, and no noise or lights whatever after landing. On arriving at Big Hill the navy boats, if on hand, will disembark the troops at once, the engineers going in the pontoons; if not, the pontoons will be used for all the troops.
Second. The troops will be formed on the shore, excepting engineers, as fast as they land. If pontoons are not needed for disembarking, as soon as some companies are formed the pontoons will be moved back from the beach firmly on to the marsh grass, the landing being made near a hole through the sand-hill. It is expected everybody will get wet.
Third. Before starting across marsh a line of guides must be placed; then move pontoons, hauling them by ropes half way across marsh. Number of men to a boat to be found by trial.