Today in History:

54 Series I Volume I- Serial 1 - Charleston


Sumter against our battery was heavy, but, I am happy to say, ineffectual, and resulted in neither injury to the battery or to the men.

I take great pleasure in bringing to your notice Lieutenant B. S. Burnet, who, from the commencement to the last, was teary at his post, giving all necessary orders, and by his example gave double courage to the men under my command. I would also mention First Sergeant P. Cummings, Fourth Corporal G. Kay; also Privates Tracy, Stewart, Grant, Rawlins, Wheelis, Keen, Cody, Dwyer, and, indeed, the whole company, with but few exceptions, performed their duty to my entire satisfaction.

I cannot close my report without favorable mention a volunteer (Charles Farelly), who in the working of the guns rendered us material service.

I am, colonel, your very obedient servant,


Lieutenant, Commanding Enfilade Battery.

Colonel R. S. RIPLEY.

Numbers 21. Reports of Captain G. B. Cuthbert, Palmetto Guard, South Carolina Infantry.


Morris Island, April 17, 1861.

DEAR SIR: In the report which I now make I propose to give an account of the most prominent incidents connected with the batteries manned by the Palmetto Guard, and which transpired during the engagement which took place on the 12th and 12th instant. I will also take occasion to mention the names of those who particularly distinguished themselves by their courage and efficiency. In conclusion I shall render you a statement of the number of shells and solid shot fired from the above-mentioned batteries.

The mortar battery at Cummings Point opened fire on Fort Sumter in its turn, after the signal shell from Fort Johnson, having been preceded by the mortar batteries on Sullivan's Island and the mortar battery of the Marion Artillery.

At the dawn of day the Iron battery commend its work of demolition. The first shell from columbiad Numbers 1, fired by the venerable Edmund Ruffin, of Virginia, burst directly upon the parapet of the southwest angel of the fort. After the first round the Iron battery continued firing at regular intervals of fifteen minutes, in accordance with the orders of General Beauregard. The mortar battery continued during the day in the order prescribed.

At 7 o'clock a. m. Major Anderson fire his first shot. This way directed at the Iron battery. The ball passed a few feet above the upper bolts of the shed. The enemy continued firing at too great an elevation until the sixth shot, which fell harmlessly upon the upper portion of the shed, between the embrasures Numbers 2 and Numbers 3. At 9 o'clock a. m. columbiad Numbers 1 became disabled by the recoil of the piece, which broke the bolts connecting the cabins with the epaulement. This damage was repaired, however, after the expiration of an hour. At 10 o'clock a. m. columbiad Numbers 2, being aimed at the 10-inch columbiad bearing upon the Iorn battery from the parapet of the southwest angle, was fired with such precision as to dismount the grim monster. A few minutes afterwards the window of columbiad Numbers 2 was struck near the center by a