HEADQUARTERS MARINE CORPS,
Washington, January 18, 1861.
Honorable ISAAC TOUCEY,
Secretary of the Navy:
SIR; I inclose to the Department a copy of a report just received from Captain Taylor of the condition of Fort Washington and respectfully request that such action may be taken as the case requires. I beg leave to remind the Department that the fifteen days for which the marines were sent to Fort Washington will expire to-morrow.
Very respectfully, yours,
FORT WASHINGTON, January 16, 1861
Colonel JOHN HARRIS,
Commandant U. S. Marine Corps:
SIR; I presume that the object of the Government garrisoning this post at this time is to hold and retain possession of it in the case of its being attacked. I therefore feel it my duty, in consequence of its defenseless and pregnable position, to request a re-enforcement. It is the opinion of Lieutenant Lee, of the Engineers, who is now here professionally, that 150 tolerably organized men could enter the place against the force now here. As I do not wish to be placed in a position to detract from the high character of my corps, I feel myself bound to make this report. Lieutenant Lee is now preparing some of the embrasures to mount howitzers in, but when mounted I have not men sufficient to work them and at the same time protect other assailable portions of the fort.
A. S. TAYLOR.
Captain, U. S. Marine Corps, Commanding Fort Washington.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE EAST,
Troy, February 2, 1861.
Lieutenant Colonel LORENZO THOMAS.
Washington City, D. C.;
COLONEL: We have truly fallen on evil times. Treason is rife in the Southern States. How much trouble and anxiety would have been prevented if Lieutenant-General Scott's advice in October last had been followed. The Union would have been safe and the pillars of state would not now be tottering, nor the capital threatened, nor to life of the general put in jeopardy "by assassins from South Carolina and Mississippi." Under these circumstances I am anxious to be with the general, to perform any services he may think proper to require of me. I therefore request that he will give me an order to repair to Washington to await his orders. I will be prepared to leave at any moment, and I would be glad of the order in the course of eight, or ten days.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JOHN E. WOOL,