War of the Rebellion: Serial 103 Page 0057 OPERATIONS ABOUT SAINT MARK'S FLA.

Search Civil War Official Records

FEBRUARY 21 - MARCH 7, 1865. - Operations in the vicinity of Saint Mark's, Fla.

SUMMARY OF THE PRINCIPAL EVENTS.

March 4-5, 1865. - Skirmishes at East River Bridge, Fla.

5-6, 1865. - Skirmishes at Newport Bridge, Fla.

6, 1865. - Action at Natural Bridge, Fla.

REPORTS.

Numbers 1. - Brigadier General John Newton, U. S. Army, commanding District of Key West and Tortugas.

Numbers 2. - Major Edmund C. Weeks, Second Florida Cavalry (Union).

Numbers 1. Reports of Major General John Newton, U. S. Army, commanding District of Key West and Tortugas.

HDQRS. DISTRICT OF KEY WEST AND TORTUGAS,

March 15, 1865.

COLONEL: I have the honor to report the results of a recent expedition made in the neighborhood of Saint Mark's, Fla., in conjunction with a naval force intended to ascend the river. The land expedition landed at the light-house, and marched first to Newport, and finding the bridge burned there, advanced eight miles farther up to the Natural Bridge, where the enemy was found in force - it is said between 1,500 and 2,000 men. After a fierce fight, resulting in the complete repulse of the enemy, finding that the navy could not ascend the river, I decided to withdraw. This was done in order, the enemy, except a few cavalry, not daring to follow. We captured and brought off one piece of artillery, my own artillery (two navy howitzers), and my train without loss. My loss is 150 killed, wounded, and missing. The number of the latter will undoubtedly diminish. The officers and men behaved with the greatest gallantry. The enemy had first previously attacked our troops at Cedar Keys and Fort Myers, and I hoped to find them in small force near Saint Mark's, but in spite of the uniform testimony of refugees to the contrary, there is no doubt that there is, relatively to mine, a large force of the enemy in Florida, which is continually increasing. My force in the expedition was between 900 and 1,000 men, two navy howitzers, and one light 12-poundere captured from the enemy and used against him. This is merely a preliminary report, a mail leaving at 4 p. m. I arrived at 2.30 p. m. from the coast.

I have the honor to be, & c.,

JOHN NEWTON,

Brigadier-General, Commanding.

Lieutenant Colonel C. T. CHRISTENSEN,

Asst. Adjt. General, Hdqrs. Mil. Div. of West Miss., New Orleans.

HDQRS. DISTRICT OF KEY WEST AND TORTUGAS,

Key West, Fla., April 17, 1865.

Lieutenant Colonel C. T. CHRISTENSEN,

Asst. Adjt. General, Hdqrs. Mil. Div. of West Mississippi:

COLONEL: I inclose herewith a printed copy of the report of operations near Saint Mark's - already sent to you in writing, but now in a