and likewise repeated efforts to advance his lines without digging, but in each instance he was repulsed with a loss proportioned to the vigor of the attack.
At one time be established himself very close to Redoubt 2, and it became necessary, in order to hold this battery and use it effectively, to dislodge him. It was designed, to make a general attack on his part of the line to the extreme right, and Captain Clement S. Watson, my inspector-general, led the sortie in front of the battery, and was completely successful. This party captured three times their own number of the enemy under of our artillery, and the moral effect was still more important, for it inspired our troops with a bolder and the enemy with increased caution. After this the enemy guarded carefully against sudden dashes, and though frequent combats at particular point took place, and a few more sorties were contemplated, none could be undertaken with a reasonable prospect of success. I found by the 8th of April that all my artillery was about silenced; that the enemy had largely increased his; that his working parties, greatly re-enforced at every point and carefully protected against sorties, were pushing forward at a rate that would bring them up to out main works; that the pressure upon my flanks, especially the left, was so heavy that it would take my whole force to resist it successfully; that his preparations of launches in the Bay of Minette has assumed formidable proportions; and, finally, that there was unusual activity and movements in his lines. I determined to develop the situation, to discover as accurately as possible his strength and intentions, and to measure our ability for further defense. It was apparent from his superiority in heavy guns and numbers and the nearness of his approach at several points, that unless extraordinary re-enforcements could be had, the moment had at length arrived when I could no longer hold the position without imminent risk of losing the garrison. Not an officer or man had taken any unbroken rest, except such as they could snatch while on duty in the main works. When there was no fighting there was digging, cutting, moving ammunition, taking down and putting up heavy guns, and repairing damages, and extending the main lines. Two weeks of constant work, night and day, with the musket and spade, failed to discourage, but could not fail to fatigue and jade, the troops. Just at sunset, therefore, all the batteries were ordered to open, and the skirmishers and parts even of the main line to keep up a brisk fire, and all officers to observe the enemy closely, and to hold themselves in readiness for any contingency. My artillery was soon disabled and silenced, and the fire from his advanced lines showed them to be well filled men-strong lines of battle. Shortly after dark, while the firing was very heavy from all points, and especially upon the flanks, the enemy broke through the line on the extreme left, completely turned the flank of the main works, and captured some of the men in them. He was enabled to do this, for the ground here was covered with water, a marshy and densely wooded flat, and it had been impossible to get earth to throw up works or to make any covering for our men. A battery from an elevated point on the enemy's line, just in front of this flat, swept through it and rendered it almost untenable. He was at once attacked with the force disposed in advance for this very contingency, and the moment General Holtzclaw gave the information, re-enforcements were hastened to him with orders to drive back the enemy by a front and flank attack. The general reported his force not sufficient for this purpose, and there was some confusion among the troops on the extreme left; that in the dark woods and fallen timber the necessary disposition could not be made, and that the enemy was certainly