regard to the boats' crews until he should arrive; and that as there are on board the Mississippi 100 supernumerary seamen, I would suggest to him that two officers should be placed on board the schooner Aid, with as may of the men as she could accommodate, and another party of them on shore, both to be entirely at your disposal. Hearing nothing from you in reply upon that subject, I took it for granted that the proposition was agreable to you. You say, "I am happy to learn that you do now consider the instructions of the President obligatory." I do not consider the instructions of the President more obligatory now than I did on my arrival at this place. I do not regard them as conflicting with the specific orders of the Department of a latter date, which enjoin on me the immediate blockade of the Mississippi, and such other ports, especially Mobile, as the force under my command will admit. You request me to place "the vessels not otherwise engaged in enforcing the blockade in such a position near my present anchorage as in my judgment may prevent a landing by the enemy on the island." I will keep a sufficient force here for that purpose. In compliance with your request, I will send two boats' crews to man the boat left by Captain Adams. I am fully sensible of the importance attached by the Government to the safety of Fort Pickens; and I would repeat that I desire to render all the aid I can without destroying the efficiency of the ship I command, and I can but regret that there should be any difference of opinion or misunderstanding between us on the subject.
I am, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
WM. W. McKEAN,
Captain, Senior Officer Present, U. S. N.
P. S. - One of my young officers did inform me that you considered a "patrol" necessary, but I had no idea that you had reference to crews for the boat, and I directed him to inform you that I had a marine guard on the island.
HDQRS. DEPARTMENT OF FLORIDA, Numbers 34.
Fort Pickens, June 25, 1861.
Colonel Wilson, having personally reported the arrival at this place of his regiment of volunteers, is hereby directed to disembark and proceed to encamp it on Santa Rosa Island at such place as may be designated by the chief quartermaster of the department.
By order of Colonel Brown:
GEO. L. HARTSUFF,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE OHIO,
Grafton, Va., June 26, 1861.
Lieutenant General WINFIELD SCOTT:
GENERAL: Since my last letter* in regard to the Buckner matter I telegraphed to a friend, who was present at a second interview I had with Buckner at Cairo on the 13th, and have just received a reply. I had gone to Cairo on a tour of inspection, and while there Buckner
* See VOL. II, p. 674.