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makes unavoidable, and which a restoration of
peaceful relations to the Union, under the Con-
stitution, will immediately remove.

with probably one or two sections of field-

Secretary of War.

4. The disembarkment will be made in three
lines. The first line will be the brigade of Gen-
eral Wright, flanked by two sections of Hamil

BRIG.-Gen. T. W. SHERMAN, Commanding Ex- ton's light battery, accompanied by the squad
pedition to the Southern Coast.
of regular sappers and miners, and two compa-
nies of Serrell's Volunteer Engineers, with a
sufficient supply of intrenching tools and sand-
bags. The second line will be the brigade of
General Stevens, and, if necessary, accompanied
by a section of Hamilton's battery and two field-
pieces, to be manned by a company of the Third
Rhode Island regiment. The reserve will be
composed of General Viele's brigade, the re-
maining portions of Serrell's Volunteer Engi-
neers and the Third Rhode Island regiment,
and will be disposed of according to circum-

5. The boats of not only each company, but
of each regiment and brigade, will land abreast,
as far as practicable, and in the order of battle.
The utmost effort will be made to effect the
landing in that order. Should it be found im-
practicable to land immediately from the light-
ers, then the surf boats, when emptied, will im-
mediately proceed to the rapid landing of the
men from the lighters; and as soon as the whole
line is landed, all the boats will return and bring
forward in like manner the troops of the second
line, and so with the reserve.

6. The general officers and commanders of battalions, &c., will be furnished in time with a plan of descent and the particular order of battle. It is probable that the first line will have to conquer the ground on which to estab lish itself, and if opposed by greatly superior numbers, to manoeuvre and probably to moment. arily intrench. If not seriously opposed, the first line, after overcoming immediate difficul ties, will continue to drive backward the enemy, but will not venture beyond supporting dis tance from the shore, before the landing of the General commanding, or without his special


October 25, 1861.



1. This command will sail for its destination in a very few days, under convoy of a naval squadron, commanded by Commander Dupont. The transports will move in three columns, and in rear of the main body of the squadron. The transports belonging to the First brigade, will compose the right column; those of the Second brigade and Third Rhode Island regiment the centre, and those of the Third brigade, and the battalion of volunteer engineers, the third col


Each vessel will retain its order in column, and the columns will move in parallel lines equidistant, regulating from the right. The sail vessels and other transports, inadequate to the task of sailing with the fleet, will be towed by such steamers as the chief quartermaster may designate. Commander Dupont, in coöperation with the land forces, has kindly made such an arrangement of his fleet as will secure the transports from unnecessary diffusion, and all senior officers on transports, and masters of vessels, will enter into the spirit of, and conform to these arrangements, a copy of which will be duly given.

2. The General commanding announces to the expeditionary corps that it is intended to make a descent on the enemy's coast, and probably under circumstances which will demand the utmost vigilance, coolness, and intrepidity on the part of every officer and man of his command. In consideration of the justness and holiness of our cause, of the ardent patriotisin which has prompt-order. ed the virtuous and industrious citizens of our land to fly to their country's standard in the moment of her peril, he most confidently believes that he will be effectually and efficiently supported in his efforts to overthrow a zealous, active, and wily foe, whose cause is unholy and principles untenable.

3. On the approach of the transports to the place of disembarkation, each Brigade Commander will anchor his transports as near each other as practicable, and will at the proper time superintend the disembarkation of his brigade. The surf boats, with other means of disembarkation on hand, are believed to be capable of landing at once from three to four thousand men. The surf boats are of different sizes; two of the largest may take the officers and men of a company of one hundred men; two of the next size a company of seventy men, and so on in proportion. The other means of transportation may take the remainder of a brigade,

7. The commanding officer of the naval squadron has kindly consented to furnish three hundred sailors to assist in launching and manning the surf boats, and he appeals to the patriotism of the masters, mates, and sailors of the several transports, to furnish an additional number of cockswains and oarsmen. Any deficiency of oarsmen in surf boats will be supplied from the platoons on board of these respectively, so that each boat, when ready, may be rapidly rowed ashore. The soldier oarsmen will land and form with their platoons.

8. General and field officers, with their respective staffs, will endeavor to obtain landingboats for themselves, and the necessary cockswains and oarsmen from the transports and other hired vessels of the fleet.

9. The senior officers of the troops on board each transport will arrange with the master for voluntary helps of this kind which may be needed and can be given, and will make a spe

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10. As soon as the landing shall have been effected, the surf and other landing boats will revert to the chief quartermaster for immediate supples.

11. The sick and non-effective men will remain on board the several transports until provision can be made for them on shore. The non-effectives will be especially charged with the care of the sick, under directions to be left by the respective medical officers.

12. Medical officers, excepting one from each brigade, to be designated by the respective brigade commanders, will land with the troops. The three medical officers left afloat will, under the direction of the medical director, divide the duty by visiting all the sick on pard, including those of the Third Rhode Island regiment, and the battalion of Volunteer Engineers. By order of

cial report to head-quarters, as early as practi- | Bay, it was ascertained that the rebels had three cable, of the assistance thus rendered. field-works of remarkable strength, strongly garrisoned, and covered by a fleet of three gunboats, under Capt. Tatnall, late of the U. S. Navy, besides strong land forces, which the rebels were concentrating from Charleston and Savannah. The troops of the rebels were afterward ascertained to have been commanded by General Drayton. One of the forts, and probably the strongest, was situated on Hilton Head, and the other two on Philip's Island. It was deemed proper to first reduce the fort on Hilton Head, though to do this a greater or less fire might have to be met from the batteries on Bay Point at the same time. Our original plan of cooperation of the land forces in the attack had to be set aside, in consequence of the loss during the voyage, of a greater portion of our means of disembarkment, together with the fact that the only point where the troops should have landed, was from five to six miles, measuring around the intervening shoal, from the anchoring place of our transports-altogether too great a distance for successive debarkation with our limited means.

Brig.-Gen. T. W. SHERMAN.

Capt. Fifteenth Inf., Asst. Adjt.-Gen.


PORT ROYAL, S. C., Nov. 8, 1861.


It was therefore agreed that the place should be reduced by the naval force alone. In consequence of the shattered condition of the fleet, and the delay in the arrival of the vessels that were indispensable for the attack, it had to be SIR: I have the honor to report that the postponed until the 7th instant. I was a mere force under my command embarked at Annap-spectator of the combat, and it is not my provolis, Md., on the 21st of October, and arrived ince to render any report of this action; but I at Hampton Roads, on the 22d. In consequence deem it an imperative duty to say that the firof the delay in the arrival of some of our trans- ing and manoeuvring of our fleet against that ports and the unfavorable state of the weather, of the rebels and their formidable land batteries the fleet was unable to set out for the southern was a master-piece of activity and professional coast until the 29th, when, under convoy of a skill that must have elicited the applause of the naval squadron in command of Commodore Du- rebels themselves as a tactical operation. I pont, and after the most mature consideration think that too much praise cannot be awarded of the objects of the expedition by that flag- to the service and skill exhibited by the flagofficer and myself, it was agreed to first reduce officer of the naval squadron, and the officers any works that might be found at Port Poyal, connected with his ships. I deem the performS. C., and thus open the finest harbor on the ance a masterly one, and it ought to have been coast that exists south of Hatteras. seen to be fully appreciated. After the works were reduced, I took possession of them with the land forces. The beautifully constructed work on Hilton Head was severely crippled and many of the guns dismounted. Much slaughter had evidently been made there, many bodies having been buried in the fort, and some twenty or thirty were found some half mile distant. The island for many miles was found strewed with the arms, accoutrements, and baggage of the rebels, which they threw away in their hasty retreat. We have also come into possession of about forty pieces of ordnance, most of which are of the heaviest calibre and the most approved models, and a large quantity of ammunition and camp equipage. It is my duty to report the valuable services of Mr. Boutelle, assistant in the Coast Survey, assisting me with his accurate and extensive knowledge of this country. His services are invaluable to the army as well as to the navy, and I earnestly recommend that important notice be taken of

To the Adjutant-General U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.:

It was calculated to reach Port Royal in five days at most, but in consequence of adverse winds and a perilous storm on the day and night of the 1st of November, the fleet did not arrive at Port Royal bar until the 4th, and then only in part, for it had been almost entirely dispersed by the gale, and the vessels have been straggling in up to this date. The transport steamers Union, Belvedere, Osceola, and Peerless have not arrived, Two of them are known to be lost, and it is probable all are. It is gratifying, however, to say that none of the troop transports connected with the land forces were lost, though the Winfield Scott had to sacrifice her whole cargo, and the Roanoke a portion of her cargo, in order to save the lives of the men in the different regiments. The former will be unable again to put to sea. The vessels connected with the naval portion of the fleet have also suffered much, and some have been lost. After a careful reconnoissance of Fort Royal |

this very able and scientific officer by the War | joined, reports came in of disasters. I expected
to hear of many, but when the severity of the
gale and the character of the vessels are con-
sidered, we have only cause for great thank-

I am, very respectfully, your obedient serv't,
Brigadier-General Commanding. | fulness.
Adjutant-General U. S. A., Washington, D. C.


PORT ROYAL HARBOR, November 6, 1861.
Hon. Gideon Welles, Secretary of the Navy,

SIR: The Government having determined to seize and occupy one or more important points upon our Southern coast, where our squadrons might find shelter, possess a depot, and afford protection to loyal citizens, committed to my discretion the selection from among those places which it thought available and desirable for these purposes.

After mature deliberation, aided by the professional knowledge and great intelligence of the Assistant Secretary, Mr. Fox, and upon tak ing into consideration the magnitude to which the joint naval and military expedition had been extended, to which you have called my attention, I came to the conclusion that the original intentions of the Department, if carried out, would fall short of the expectations of the country and of the capabilities of the expedition, while Port Royal, I thought, would meet both in a high degree.

I therefore submitted to Brigadier-General Sherman, commanding the military part of the expedition, this modification of our earliest matured plans, and had the satisfaction to receive his full concurrence, though he and the commanders of the brigades very justly laid great stress on the necessity, if possible, of getting this frigate into the harbor of Port Royal.

On Tuesday, the 29th of October, the fleet under my command left Hampton Roads, and, with the army transports, numbered fifty vessels. On the day previous I had despatched the coal vessels, twenty-five in number, under convoy of the Vandalia, Commander Haggerty, to rendezvous off Savannah, not wishing to give the true point of the fleet.

The weather had been unsettled in Hampton Roads, though it promised well when we sailed. But off Hatteras it blew hard; some ships got into the breakers, and two struck, but without injury, on Friday, the 1st of November. The rough weather soon increased into a gale, and we had to encounter one of great violence from the southeast, a portion of which approached to a hurricane.

The fleet was utterly dispersed, and on Saturday morning one sail only was in sight from the deck of the Wabash. On the following day the weather moderated, and the steamers and | ships began to reappear. The orders were opened, except those in case of separation. These last were forwarded to all the men-ofwar by myself, and to the transports by Brigadier-General Sherman; and as the vessels reVOL. III.-Doc. 8

In reference to the men-of-war: the Isaac Smith, a most efficient and well-armed vessel for the class purchased, but not intended to encounter such sea and wind, had to throw her formidable battery overboard to keep from floundering; but, thus relieved, LieutenantCommanding Nicholson was enabled to go to the assistance of the chartered steamer Governor, then in a very dangerous condition, and on board of which was our fine battalion of marines under Major Reynolds.

They were finally rescued by Captain Ringgold in the Sabine, under difficult circumstances, soon after which the Governor went down. I believe that seven of the marines were drowned by their own imprudence. Lieutenant-Commanding Nicholson's conduct in the Isaac Smith has met my warm commendations. The Peerless transport, in a sinking condition, was met by the Mohican, Commander Gordon, and all the people on board, twenty-six in number, were saved under very peculiar circumstances, in which service Lieutenant H. W. Miller was very favorably noticed by his commander.

On passing Charleston I sent in the Seneca, Lieutenant-Commanding Ammen, to direct Captain Lardner to join me with the steamer Susquehanna off Port Royal without delay.

On Monday, at eight o'clock in the morning, I anchored off the bar, with some twenty-five vessels in company, with many more heaving in sight.

The Department is aware that all the aids to navigation had been removed, and the bar lies ten miles seaward, with no features on the shore line with sufficient prominence to make any bearing reliable. But, owing to the skill of Commander Davis, the fleet captain, and Mr. Boutelle, the able assistant of the Coast Survey, in charge of the steamer Vixen, the channel was immediately found, sounded out, and buoyed.

By three o'clock I received assurances from Captain Davis that I could send forward the lighter transports, those under eighteen feet, with all the gunboats, which was immediately done, and before dark they were securely anchored in the roadstead of Port Royal, S. C. The gunboats almost immediately opened their batteries upon two or three rebel steamers under Commodore Tatnall, instantly chasing him under the shelter of the batteries. In the morning Commander John Rodgers, of the U. S. steamer Flag, temporarily on board this ship, and acting on my staff, accompanied BrigadierGeneral Wright in the gunboat Octavia, Lieutenant-Commanding Stevens, and supported by the Seneca, Lieutenant-Commanding Nicholson, made a reconnoissance in force, and drew the fire of the batteries on Hilton Head and Bay Point sufficiently to show that the fortifications

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The draft of this plan was made by G. C. Plicque, the other 4 guns. The plan of the attack was simof the engineers attached to the Port Royal expedi- ple and effective, being for the ships to steam in tion. The batteries were situated-one, a strong, a circle, or ellipse, running close to one shore as. admirably-built fortification, called Fort Walker, they came down the river, drifting or steaming as mounting 23 guns, on the one side of the Broad slowly as possible past the batteries there, and payRiver, (here about 2 miles wide,) and two other ing their fiery respects, then making the turn to batteries, behind less elaborate earthworks, on the go back, and as they went up the river, favoring opposite side of the river. Of the latter, one mount- the other batteries with a similar compliment.-N. ed 15 guns, and was named Fort Beauregard, and Y. Tribune.

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