Fort Fisher

    These pages are dedicated to the memory of all the men from North Carolina that fought in the Civil War.

    Fayetteville Observer, Thursday, January 26, 1865
    From the Raleigh Confederate
    We have received the following account, from the lips of a gentleman, who, we are sure, is as 
    accurately informed concerning the late engagement between our forces and the enemy at 
    Fort Fisher, as any one.
    The movement of the enemy was sudden, as we all know.  After the previous failure, it was not
    anticipated that so quick a repetition of the effort would be made.  General Hoke had been 
    withdrawn towards Wilmington, or above it.  On Thursday a Mr. McMillan, as our informant 
    heard, discovered from near Topsail Sound the approach of the enemy, and sought to 
    communicate by telegraph to General Bragg the fact; but the operator was not in a condition to 
    send the dispatch, and it became necessary to transmit the news by a messenger.  In two 
    hours after the intelligence was received, General Hoke was on the march to confront the 
    enemy at his point of landing. 
    On Friday the enemy landed under cover of his fleet, near Battery Gatlin, about nine miles from 
    Fort Fisher.  While he was landing, General Hope appeared and drew up in line parallel to watch 
    his movement s and intercept them when possible to do so.  It was not possible to prevent the 
    landing, owing to the situation of the point chosen.  The enemy landed on the banks, just above 
    the neck of the Sound, thus interposing a small surface of water between them and the 
    attacking force, or compelling such force to circle around the lower extreme of the Sound; either 
    of which movements would have to be done under the fire of the whole fleet.
    When General Hoke found this to be the situation, he established a line facing the sea, and threw 
    out what cavalry he required (if he had it) on his right flank, towards Battery Anderson, which 
    was down the beach towards Fort Fisher, about four miles.  The intervening country here is 
    broken, and the low places are grown up with thick bushes and are marsh.  The purpose of the 
    cavalry was to observe the movements and give the signal of the first advance of the enemy 
    towards establishing a line across the neck of land to the river, it being the order and purpose of 
    General Bragg to have General Bragg to have General Hoke attack him as soon as he advanced.  
    In this condition matters rested until Friday night.  During that night the enemy passing between 
    the cavalry and threading their way through the thick marshy undergrowth, made their way to the 
    river, and on Saturday morning General Hoke found an entrenched line on his right flank, 
    extending across the peninsula, from the sea to or near to the river.  He succeeded, however, 
    in maintaining his base at Sugar Loaf, immediately changed his line, and informed General 
    Bragg of the status.  Then General Bragg gave the order to charge the enemy in their works. In 
    the mean time General Hoke had made a close reconnaissance, under the fire of the enemy, 
    and discovered the strength of their force and position.    On receiving orders to charge, he 
    communicated the result of his observations, and asked General Bragg to reconnoiter in person, 
    which he did; and both of these officers concurred that it was not proper to assault the lines.
    It was then determined to reinforce the Fort; and steps were taken (balance of sentence is illegible).  
    By this time the enemy, four thousand strong, were behind their works, and the fleet proceeded 
    to bombard Fort Fisher, which was done uninterruptedly until Sunday about 6:00 p.m.
    On Sunday the column of assault, numbering about 4,000, moved from the enemy’s lines and 
    as they advanced they were plainly visible from Fort Fisher.  But her beleaguered garrison was 
    kept close confined within the bomb proofs by the concentrated and continued fire of 700 guns, 
    pouring torrents of shell and missiles on every spot.  On the land side of Fort Fisher we had 17 
    guns—sufficient, could they have been used, to make it impossible that any force could have 
    advanced under their fire.  But as the line of assailants got nearer to the Fort, the whole fleet 
    concentrated the fire, in ricochet shot, on the land side and speedily dismounted every gun; 
    and this was kept up until the enemy’s line was in 60 yards of the works.  Then it ceased and 
    with a rush and yell the charge was made.
    Captain Braddey, it is said, commanded the company guarding the sally port.  On him the hope 
    of the garrison hung to keep the assailants out until the men and officers, who had been packed 
    in the bomb proofs for 56 hours, could get out and make ready.  Instead of making defense, this 
    officer and his command, it is said, surrendered, and the enemy entered the open gate.*(See 
    below)  Our men were benumbed and exhausted, and the thing was the work of a moment. 
    They were obliged to fall back in order to rally.  Col. Lamb, with that cool precision which 
    distinguished him as an officer of great merit, brought his men into line near headquarters, 
    General Whiting being present, encouraging and cheering on the troops, and creating enthusiasm 
    by his ardent and whole souled heroism.  
    Under these inspiring influences our men were brought to the charge. The numbers were 
    against them in the proportion of 4,000, aided by 2,000 marines, to 2,000 but they forced the 
    enemy back on the mound and a hand to hand fight, of unmitigated desperation and fury, 
    ensued, continuing from 7:00 to about 10:00, when braver, endurance and devotion failed to 
    overcome numbers.  Our men were overpowered and the work of assault was accomplished.  
    But not until the enemy had paid dearly for his prize.  He had not lost a man until he entered 
    the Fort.  He lost 2,000 out of the 6,000 that entered the precincts—we 500.  Of the courage 
    of our officers and men on this occasion, future tongues will speak.
    Foremost in that little band of noble heroes, Whiting was everywhere where peril was most 
    besetting.  His voice cheered—his spirit animated—his arm struck down the foeman’s flag.  
    He put his life in the hollow of his hand, and held it out a free offering to his country.  And he 
    did this so gloriously that, whoever thinks of him in connection with this furious struggle, will 
    yield to the gratification of being absorbed in contemplation of splendid courage.
    We are glad to learn that he is but slightly wounded, though in several places; and we mourn 
    the fact that this faithful and true officer, Col. Lamb, is so severely injured. That he may be 
    spared and blessed with a speedy recovery, ought to be the prayer of all our people.
    *Our friends of the Confederate will be glad to know that its correspondent has been misinformed 
    in this particular.  Captain Braddy and his command did their whole duty in the bloody fight.  
    Fayetteville Observer, Monday, January 23, 1865
    Casualties at Fort Fisher
    William H. Haigh, of this place, a member of Capt. Braddy’s Artillery, captured at Fort fisher, 
    writes that he and Corp. McArthur, A.B. Brown, H.E. Devane, Corp. Cashwell, Daniel Brown, 
    Malcolm Brown, Thomas Ross, Sgt. Graham, were all well, on board to leave immediately for 
    Fort Monroe—Oscar Hawley slightly wounded in face.
    North Carolina Standard
    January 25, 1865
    List of Casualties in Company D, 40th Regiment, Captain Jas. S. Lane commanding, up to 
    Saturday night, 14th inst.  (Ft. Fisher)
    Killed:  Pte. M.P. Caton
    Wounded:  Capt. J.S. Lane, not serious; Sgt. W.W. Briggs, slight; Jas. W. Dickson, arm 
    broken; W.L. Edwards, shoulder, slight; Franklin Dunn, slight in arm; Alfred Basedon, slight; 
    Thomas Bradley, severe in leg and jawbone broken
    The following were left on detail at Ft. Holmes:
    Lt. J.J. Brabble, William Daniel, J.L. Griffin, Jas. H. French, E.S. Robinson, Thomas R. Spence, 
    W.R. Bridges
    Sick:  Kenneth Gaither, Lewis Hudson, Alfred Warner, N.B. Howe—these were also left at Fort 
    The balance of the company with Captain Lane were at Ft. Fisher.
    North Carolina Standard
    Feb. 8, 1865
    List of commissioned officers captured at Fort Fisher, Federal Point, N.C., by U.S. Forces 
    under the command of Brevet Major General Alfred H. Terry on the 15th January
    W.H.C. Whiting, Major General, severely wounded
    J.H. Hill, Major, and Acting Adjutant General
    S.G. Hasell, Lt. and A.D.C., wounded slightly
    J.T.S. Reid, Lt. and Acting Adjt General
    The following are from the 36th N.C.V.:
    William Lamb, Colonel, N.C.V., severely wounded
    James M. Stevenson, major
    J.K. Brady, Captain
    R.J. Murphy, Captain
    E.B. Dudley, Captain
    O.H. Powell, Captain
    J.T. Melvin, Captain
    Daniel Patterson, Captain
    Daniel Munn, Captain
    1st Lieutenants:  J.Wescott, J. Soule, N. Legrand, A.V. Goodwin, Wm. Swain, G.D. Parker 
    (also adjutant), A.McD. Jones (also Orderly Officer)
    Lieutenants:  H.D. Williams, John Stansell, W.C. Daniel, M.W. Pridgen, W.W. McCrame, A.B. 
    Burr (wounded slightly), Jas. Owen, C.J. Williams (wounded slightly), J.M. Cowan, H.E. Benton,
     J.N. Kelly, A.B. Barrow, W.W. Drew (wounded slightly), E.R. Hunter, J.J. Cain, Thomas 
    Hickman, E.L. Faison
    10th N.C. Volunteers
    Major James Riley
    Capt. E.D. Walsh
    Captain W. Shaw
    Lt. E.G. Wood, wounded severely
    Lt. T. Arendell
    Lt. Irvin Fulford
    Marine Corps
    Captain A.C. Van Benthuyson, wounded seriously
    First Lt. D. Bradford
    Lt. J.C. Murdoch
    Lt. J.D.B. Roberts
    1st Lt. W.G. Higgins
    40th N.C.V.
    G.C. Buchan, wounded seriously
    J.S. Lane, wounded slightly
    D.J. Clarke
    H.M. McBride
    1st Lieutenants: C.S. Bryan, W. Hassel
    Lieutenants:  A.J. McNair, J. M. McKinnon, A. Barrington, H.H. Hooker, J.W. Dickson, W.F. 
    21st S.C.V.
    Captains:  D.G. Debese, Thomas Ford, E.B. Green, W.B. Baker, wounded slightly
    E.R.W. McEune, 1st Lt. and Adjutant, wounded
    Lieutenants:  W.D. Woodbury, J.C. Clements, S.D. Sanders, H.B. White, H. Wilson, D.R. 
    McIvor, wounded slightly, F. Sivers, W.D. Cook, wounded slightly, T.D. Zimmerman
    25th S.C.V.
    Captains:  C. Logan, J.T. Izler
    1st Lt. A.J. Mines
    Lieutenants:  J.M. Pendergrast, J. Graves, E.R. Rush, J.E. Prince, , E.J. Norris, W.D. 
    Crotchett, W. Salters, W.W. Wise, T.F. Felder
    11th S.C.V.
    Capt. H.K. Hucks
    Lt. J.P. Mims
    1st Battalion N.C.V.
    Lieutenants H.C. Evans, T.N. Argo
    13th S.C. Light Battery
    Capt. Z.T. Adams
    Lt. C.H. Latham
    3rd N.C. Light Battery
    Capt. J.M. Sutton
    Lts. J.R. Powell and J.G. Frame
    2nd Engineers N.C.V.
    2nd Lt. U.R. Gwinn
    Lt. R.G. Pitman
    Capt., and A.C.S., C.H. Blocker
    Telegraph Corps
    Lt. Hugh Waddell, Jr.
    Lt. T.W. Strandell
    S. Singleton, Surgeon, C.S.A.
    D.G. Carr, J.C. Shepard, P. Bledsoe, E.J. Muirhead, Assistant Surgeons, C.S.A.
    Acting Assistant Surgeon William Willis, C.S.A.
    Assistant Surgeons C.S. Navy, W.W. Griggs, George A. Foote, J.M. Hicks
    Alfred H. Terry, Major General
    The officers not specially noted above in the list as wounded are stated by General Terry to be 
    held uninjured or slightly wounded so as to need no surgical attention.  The above is a correct 
    copy of the list furnished by Major General Terry, commanding U.S. forces at Fort fisher.
    Archer Anderson, A.A.G.
    The Fort Fisher Prisoners
    The following is a list of North Carolinians confined at Baker’s Island, New York harbor, and was 
    furnished to the Confederate by a surgeon who accompanied the prisoners.
    3rd Battalion
    Company C
    W.T. Lowe, stunned; A. Cable, right arm amputated; G.W Edwards, wounded in foot; J.W. 
    Farmer, right foot; J.J. Peel, left leg, serious; J.R. White, right foot; W.G. Ingram, left thigh; 
    C.J. Jenkins, right arm amputated.
    13th Battalion
    Company I
    J.W. Morgan, right thigh; John Davis, bronchitis; E.N. Joyner, fractured cranium; Walter Bruce, 
    right arm amputated (died Jan. 20); Jas. Jackson, knee
    1st Battalion
    Company D:  J.D. Baker, leg (died Feb. 5); A. Blow, stunned; H. McQueen, thigh; K.B. 
    McKimmon, right shoulder; M.D. McNeal, left thigh; J.D. Kenedy, right foot; M.T. McMillan, 
    died of pneumonia Jan. 27; K.A. Evans, leg (died Jan. 26); R.A. Johnson, thigh; R.D. McMillan,
    Company C
    Daniel Hare, left arm amputated
    10th N.C. Regiment
    L.W. Menus, Company K, flesh wound, thigh; W.T. Murphy, Company K, thigh and groin
    J.R. Coleman, City Battalion, typhoid fever; A. Tyson, Company B, flesh wound
    36th N.C.R.
    Company B
    D.R. Perry, left arm amputated (died 19th –month illegible); E.J. Nance, left foot; D. McNorton, 
    amputation of both legs (died Jan. 18)
    Company C
    N. Stevenson, left knee, severe; D. Mathews, right hand amputated; J.W. Autry, fractured lower 
    jaw; J.M. Lockeman, right forearm amputated; W. Serlaner(?) Sarianer(?), right leg; J.A. Ross, 
    fracture of upper jaw; W. Sessamas, foot and leg; L.G. Smith, left arm amputated; C.T. Jenkins, 
    right arm amputated.
    Company D
    A.J. Wheeler, left ankle; J.H. Fisher, and D. Riley, concussion of the brain; J.H. Fisher, 
    fractured cranium; John Riley, head; Jno Dale, hernia
    Company E
    J.B. McLean, thigh (died Jan. 29); R. Ryland, left lung; A. Strickland, left leg; Moses Tyson, arm
    Company F
    W.H. Randolph, arm, slight; E. Partin, thigh (died Feb. 7); Jno. Weaver, bowels (died Jan. 28); 
    B. (or R.) E. Lane, head; A. Howriston, arm; B. Pope, thigh; W.C. Hardy, thigh (died Jan. 28); 
    F.M. Happ, left ear off; J.T. Ethridge, arm; Thomas Locke, arm, severe; J. Marks, head, severe; 
    G. P. Matthews, bowels (died Jan. 19); B. Throner, head (died Jan. 20); Jas. Milsear(?), died 
    Jan. 21
    Company G
    D. Bryant, left arm amputated; J.M. Mintz, shoulder; J.P. Johnson, stunned; T.W. Walton, left 
    leg; B. Cook, wrist and thigh; Wash Biggs, thigh
    Company H
    W.C. Sutton, thigh; James Whitted; left thigh; T.A. Peterson, left shoulder, died Jan. 29
    Company K
    H. Hickman, right arm amputated; Lt. J.S. Wascot, left hip; J.S. Milikin, head; J.O. Evans, 
    diarrhea; T.W. Williams, catarrh; L.J. McLean, measles; S.W. Lewis, wounded in right breast
    40th N.C.R.
    Company C
    N.J. Simmons, left arm
    Company D 
    T.J. Bradley, arm and jaw (died Jan. 30); W. Cummings, thigh; D. Pate, right side; M.P. 
    Seaton, head (died Jan. 19)
    Company E
    N. Jackson, right thigh
    Company F
    J.W. Brown and K. Church, fractured left thigh; F.A. Shotwell, right side; W.L. Barnes, neck
    Company G
    L. Kornegay, left thigh; W.F. Morton, back (died Jan. 26); -------- Mathewson, back; Captain 
    Buchan, back; Sgt. S.H. Williams (died Jan. 28); C.D. Brooks, (died Feb. 5); W.t. Quinn, left
    thigh; H. Harris, side; J.F. Martin, right knee
    Company H
    N.R. Woody, died Feb. 7
    Company C (again??—may be a misprint, see above for Company C also)
    B. Harrison, elbow, severe; D. Allen and D.G. Powers, amputation of left leg; J.C. Smith, left 
    foot; G.R. Thompson, right hand; G.W. Ballantine, right leg; J.H. McLeod, thigh; S.B. Clark, 
    left leg; J.W. Wilson, arm; W.O. Karroll, leg (died Jan. 29)

    Transcribed by Christine Spencer December 2007

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