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U. S. S. Pocahontas - April 1862
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Report of Lieutenant Balch,

U. S. Navy, regarding a reconnoissance in North Edisto River, South Carolina, April 9-10, 1862.

 

 

U. S. S. POCAHONTAS, North Edisto River, April 11, 1862.

 

 

SIR: Since the sailing of the Crusader I have endeavored to become acquainted, as far as possible, with the localities of this station; and that we might more effectually cooperate with the forces stationed on North Edisto, I invited Colonel E. Q. Fellows, of the Third New [lamp- shire Regiment, and several members of his staff to come aboard, that we might together make a reconnaissance up the North Edisto. On the 9th instant we proceeded up the river, passing the mouth of the Dawho, and anchored a short distance above the position where Lieutenant Commanding Rhind found the torpedoes, and which he so successfully captured. Having been informed by a contraband that there was a battery of two guns on Bear Bluff, and observing some rebels on shore, I directed the10-inch gun to be fired in that direction. This dispersed the rebels, but brought no reply from the battery, and we were of the opinion that there was no battery on Bear Bluff. Having received an invitation from Colonel Fellows, of the Third New Hampshire Regiment, commanding the post, to cross the island and visit the outposts, I gladly availed myself of his kind offer and accompanied him to the South Edisto side of the island, and near to Watts Cut, where we saw only about fifteen or twenty of the rebel pickets, but did not go nearer them than easy rifle range. The admirable disposition of the troops at the present time secures, n my judgment, the complete control of this island and vicinity, and an attack from the enemy can be successfully repelled by the force now here. We draw from the reconnaissance made on the 9th instant aboard this ship, and on the 10th instant across the island, that a light-draft gunboat off Jehossee Island, in the South Edisto and a vessel off the Dawho, as recommended by Lieutenant Commanding Rhind, which position I shall take in the morning, will render an attack from the rebels impossible. I need only say that the heartiest cordiality exists between the commandant of this post and myself, not only socially, but officially. I have expressed my desire to cooperate in every way most advantageous to the cause in which we are engaged. I am happy to report all well aboard the Pocahontas.

 

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

Geo. B. BALOR,

Lieutenant, Commanding.

 

 

Flag-Officer S. F. Du PONT,

Comdg. South Atlantic Blockading Squadron, Port Royal, S. C.

 

 

SOURCE: Official records of the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion. ; Series I - Volume 12: North Atlantic Blockading Squadron (February 2, 1865 - August 3, 1865); South Atlantic Blockading Squadron (October 29, 1861 - May 13, 1862); pages 276-277.

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