Lest We Forget - African American Military History by Researcher, 
				Author and Veteran Bennie McRae, Jr.


Ringgold Barracks, Tex, July 31, 1865.

 Lieut. Col. D. D. WHEELER,
  Asst. Adjt. Gen., Hdqrs. 25th Army Corps, Brownsville, Tex.:

COLONEL: I have the honor to submit the following report of the transfer of my division from City Point, Va., to Texas: On the 25th of May, according to orders from corps headquarters, the troops marched from Camp Lincoln and embarked at City Point, some on ocean steamers and some on river boats, and proceeded to Hampton Roads, where the troops on steam (river) boats were transferred to ocean steamers waiting at that point to receive them. The 26th, 27th, 28th, 29th, and 30th days of May were spent in coaling, repairing, watering, in having the officers of the command paid at Norfolk, Va., pursuant to orders, and in putting to sea as fast as the several ships were ready to sail. On the 31st of May the steamship Illinois, the last of the ships carrying troops and having the headquarters of the division on board, sailed. All of the ships had orders to rendezvous in Mobile Bay. The whole division arrived safely at the point of rendezvous, without accident or particular incident, between the 6th and 9th days of June, and, according to instructions, I had the troops landed and the vessels coaled and thoroughly cleaned. The process of coaling was an exceedingly difficult one, as all the ships had to receive their coal from one vessel. Pursuant to instructions from Major-General Sheridan, transmitted through Major-General Granger, dated headquarters U.S. Forces, Fort Morgan, Ala., June 8, 1865, the First Brigade was directed to proceed to Indianola, Tex., and garrison it, and the Second and Third Brigades to Brazos Santiago, Tex., the Third Brigade to be stationed there, and the Second Brigade, as soon as a lighter could be procured, to go to Corpus Christi, land, and occupy it. I was ordered to report by the instructions referred to above to Major-General Steele at Brazos. So many of the vessels as required it were ordered to the Mississippi to take in water, and to use dispatch in doing so. One of the vessels, the Thetis, carrying animals, being in instant need of water, was directed to proceed immediately to the Mississippi for it. She required coal also, but could not be allowed time enough to take it in at Mobile Bay on account of the necessity for procuring an early supply of water. She was therefore ordered to New Orleans for it as the shortest and quickest way. The Second and Third Brigades arrived off Brazos between the 12th and 15th days of June. On June 13, having procured from Major-General Steele's quartermaster at Brazos two lighters--fishing smacks--the Third Brigade was ordered to Corpus Christi. Owing to want of proper lighters and the rough sea on the bar the Second Brigade was not all ashore at Brazos until the 21st of June. On the 22d of June the vessels carrying the Third Brigade again arrived off the bar at Brazos Santiago, the commanding officer having received orders from corps headquarters not to land at Corpus Christi, but to disembark his command at the first mentioned place. It was all ashore on the morning of the 21th of June. I may here remark that when the Third Brigade arrived off Corpus Christi the sea was so rough that the troops could not be landed, and the vessels falling short of coal and water, the commanding officer ordered it to Galveston for a supply. Of the movements and wanderings of the First Brigade after it left Mobile Bay I know nothing, except what is contained in the accompanying papers from Colonel Shaw, the brigade commander, marked A, B, and O, respectively. The following is a list of the vessels which carried this division from Virginia to Texas: Victor, Hermann Livingstone, Wilmington, Thomas A. Scott, Matagorda, William Kennedy, Daniel Webster, Trade Wind, Nightingale, Rebecca Clyde, Cassandra, Prometheus, United States, Illinois, Montauk, Warrior, Thetis, Rebecca Barton. The Thetis, Warrior, and Rebecca Barton were loaded with horses and mules--public and private--wagons, &c., and the two last-named vessels not being loaded and ready when I left City Point did not accompany me. While at Hampton Roads I telegraphed the major-general commanding the corps that the Rebecca Barton and Warrior would not be ready in time to accompany me, and he directed me to sail without them, leaving them sailing orders. I did not see them until some time after my arrival at Brazos. The Warrior lost a number of horses by disease and suffocation, too many having been put on board of her--by the officers of the quartermaster's department having charge of the matter at City Point---according to the report of the officer in charge, which I have already had the honor of forwarding to you. The reports of the commanders of the Second and Third Brigades are inclosed, marked D and E. I hope this report may prove satisfactory, but I fear not. It is, however, the best I can furnish from the data on hand, and I do not like to delay it any longer--to wait for the report of the First Brigade--lest by doing so I might interfere with the arrangements or plans of the major-general commanding.

I have the honor to be, colonel, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


 Brigadier-General of Volunteers, Commanding.

[Inclosure A.(*)]

Steamer United States, New Orleans, La., June 20, 1865.

Assistant Adjutant-General:

SIR: I have the honor to report that with my command on the steamers United States, Victor, Rebecca Clyde, and Matagorda I left, Mobile Bay on Friday, June 9, for Indianola, Tex., in obedience to orders from division headquarters. I arrived there with the steamers United States and Victor June 12, and on the 13th the steamers D. Webster and R. Clyde arrived, and on the 15th the steamer Matagorda, the last named being a light-draft steamer for lightering the troops over the bar. On my arrival I found a high sea breaking across the bar, which sea constantly increased during my stay, rendering it impossible, in the opinion of the commanders of the several vessels, for a boat to cross the bar. On the 18th, finding my coal and water coming short, and no prospect of better weather, I gave orders for the fleet to return to Fort Jackson, disembark the troops, clean the vessels, and coal and water. I arrived with the steamers United States and Victor last night, and proceeded to this city in the steamship United States for the purpose of procuring medical supplies and provisions for the vessel. I left orders for the steamers Webster, Clyde, and Matagorda to coal at Southwest Pass and reload their troops. I have the honor to request that the Victor may be ordered to this city to make necessary repairs on her boilers, and that I may be furnished with a pilot for Indianola bar.

I am, sir, very respectfully, your obedient servant,


 Colonel Seventh U.S. Colored Troops, Commanding Brigade.

[Inclosure D.]

Edinburg, Tex., July 29, 1865.

 Capt. R. C. SHANNON,
Asst. Adjt. Gen., Second Division, Twenty-fifth Army Corps:

CAPTAIN: I have the honor to submit the following report for the time which I was in command of this brigade while on the expedition from City Point, Va., to Brazos Santiago, Tex. Leaving Camp Lincoln, Va., on the morning of the 26th of May, the brigade embarked at City Point, Va., on the steamers assigned to it during the day, and at once proceeded to Hampton Roads, where it arrived the next morning.

On the 29th of May three of the five vessels on which the brigade was embarked put to sea, the others following the next day, the commander of each vessel having orders to proceed to Mobile Bay, and there disembark his men, clean his vessel, and obtain a fresh supply of coal and water, if possible, then re-embark his men, and await further orders. The whole brigade arrived safely at the appointed rendezvous between the 6th and 8th of June, without accident or particular incident. Being unable to obtain a fresh supply of water the men were not re-embarked until the vessels were ready to proceed on the voyage. Brevet Brigadier-General Doubleday arrived here on the 8th of June, and at once resumed command of the brigade.

I am, very respectfully, sir, your obedient servant,


Col. 41st U.S. Colored Troops, Bvt. Brig. Gen. of Vols., Comdg.

[Inclosure E.]

Roma, Tex., July 27, 1865.

 Capt. R. C. SHANNON,
Asst. Adjt. Gen., Second Division, Twenty.fifth Army Corps:

CAPTAIN: In compliance with instructions contained in communications from headquarters Second Division, Twenty-fifth Army Corps, dated July 26, 1865, I have the honor to submit the following report for my brigade of the expedition from City Point, Va., to Brazos Santiago, Tex.: In compliance with orders dated headquarters Second Division, Twenty-fifth Army Corps, May 24, 1865, the Third Brigade marched from Camp Lincoln, Va., to City Point, Va., May 25, 1865, where the troops were embarked on the following steamers, viz, Wilmington, William Kennedy, Nightingale, Prometheus, and Montauk, and the same day proceeded to Hampton Roads, Va., where they arrived and anchored in the Roads on the morning of the 26th of May. On the 31st received orders dated headquarters Second Division, Twenty-fifth Army Corps, May 30, 1865, to proceed to the vicinity of Fort Morgan or Fort Gaines, Mobile Bay, and there await further orders. Put to sea at 10 a.m.; passed Cape Henry light at 12 m. same date; arrived off Fort Morgan, Ala., June 9,1865, and same date put to sea for Brazos Santiago, Tex., via the mouth of the Mississippi River. Came to anchor outside the bar at Brazos Santiago, June 13, 1865. Ordered to Aransas Pass, Tex., and put to sea June 15 for that place; arrived off Aransas Pass June 16, 1865; strong gales from southeast; seven feet of water on the bar, rendering it impossible to disembark the troops. The fleet being short of coal and water was obliged to proceed to Galveston, Tex., the nearest point for supplies; arrived off Galveston Bar June 18; on the 19th went in to the wharf; took in supplies of coal and water; put to sea June 21, and arrived at Brazos Santiago, Tex., June 22, 1865; on the morning of the 24th of June all the troops were disembarked at Brazos Santiago, Tex.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,


 Colonel 116th U. S. Colored Infantry, Commanding Brigade.

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Researched and Compiled
Bennie J. McRae, Jr.
LWF Network
Trotwood, OHIO


Category: Civil War | Subcategory: XXV Army Corps | Tags: Mississippi , Virginia , Texas , Illinois
Related Topics / Keywords / Phrases: 1865, 24th, 25th, 27th, 28th, 30th, Assistant Adjutant-General, Brazos Santiago, Brazos Santiago (Texas), Brownsville (Texas), Calhoun County (Texas), City Point, City Point (Virginia), Civil War, Corpus Christi, Daniel, Galveston (Texas), Grange, Hampton, Henry, Illinois, Indian, Indianola (Texas), Jack, Lincoln, Livingston, Louisiana, Mississippi, Mississippi River, Mobile, New Orleans, New Orleans (Louisiana), Norfolk (Virginia), Ohio, Prince George County (Virginia), Ranger, Texas, Virginia, Wilmington (North Carolina),