supply of fine ammunition. The enemy commenced evacuating all the works last night, and Mayor Macbeth surrendered the city to the troops of General Schimmelfenning at 9 o'clock this morning, at which time it was occupied by our forces. Our advance on the Edisto and from Bull's Bay hastened the retreat. Thecotton warehouses, arsenal, quartermaster's stores, railroad bridges, and two iron-clads were burned by the enemy. Some vessels in the ship-yard were also burned. Nearly all the inhabitants remaining in the city belong to the poorer classes.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Q. A. GILLMORE,
HDQRS. COAST DIVISION, DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH,
Combahee, S. C., February 18, 1865.
Major General Q. A. GILLMORE,
Commanding Department of the South:
GENERAL: The enemy last night burned the railroad bridge over the Edisto. Are apparently not in force on its bank. A contraband from vicinity of Charleston reports the enemy evacuating. He reports Sumter and Moultrie as already abandoned. I will do my best to cross the Edisto to-morrow. Will be obliged to transport boats, unless a gun-boat can to go up the Edisto and cross us.
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JOHN P. HATCH,
Brigadier-General, Commanding Division.
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF THE SOUTH, Numbers A.
Charleston, S. C., February 18, 1865.
I. The city of Charleston and its dependencies will form part of the Northern District of this department, under the command of Brigadier-General Schimmelfennig, who will take all necessary measures for its safety and security. The headquarters will, until further orders, be located in the city.
II. Brigadier General E. E. Potter, with the troops and transports operating from Bull's Bay, will report to Brigadier-General Schimmelfennig.
Q. A. GILLMORE,
Washington City, February 19, 1865.
I congratulate you on the news from South Carolina. I have directed your order in respect to deserters to be printed in large handbills and posted in every camp and distributed on the boats.
EDWIN M. STANTON,
Secretary of War.