HDQRS. DEPT. OF VIRGINIA AND NORTH CAROLINA,
CHIEF ENGINEER'S OFFICE,
November 16, 1864.
GENERAL: I have the honor to submit the following as my report of engineering operations in this department for the week ending November 12, 1864:
On the 9th commenced corduroying supply roads leading to the Tenth Army Corps front with daily details of 300 men. A line of breast-works was thrown up on the night of the 9th along the high road bordering the Four-Mile Creek between the Kingsland and New Market roads, fronting eastward and terminating at the redoubt at the base of Signal Hill; 2,000 men were employed. This line will be the line of defense of the Eighteenth Corps reserves in case the enemy pass the redoubts on Camp Holly and to the right of the New Market road approaching down that road. A well has been made in the redoubt of Camp Holly, water being obtained at thirty-five feet depth. One has been commenced in the redoubt on Signal Hill and is now twenty-six feet deep. The redoubt in the forks of the Four-Mile Creek is well advanced, embrasures being ready for eleven guns; abatis surround it; an infantry parapet runs from its flank across the New Market road and up the New Market Hill, defended by an abatis in front. This prevents a cavalry dash down the road and past our redoubts. Considerable labor has been expended on a battery south of Four-Mile Creek to command the New Market road, in rear of Signal and Camp Holly Hills, and in slashing timber in Four-Mile Creek and ravines near it. The corduroy road across the ravine between Aiken's Bridge and the high ground is progressing slowly. Teams are scarce and the timber has to be brought from a distance. At Dutch Gap a gallery has been run into the embankment at the west end a distance of forty feet; it is four by five feet high. It starts in at the left side twenty-five feet from the face of the embankment, and runs in twenty-five feet on a slope of 1 on 4 and then turns to the right five feet. A shaft three feet in diameter is sunk here eleven feet, and from the bottom a gallery is run in eighteen feet parallel to the gallery above. At ten feet from the end a gallery is made to the left to the distance of ten feet, as shown in the accompanying plan and section. From rough computation there remains but 4,500 cubic yards to remove now, which is being taken out at the rate of 400 cubic yards per day. A railroad and some dump cars have been put in operation to aid in removing the dirt; one of the dumping boats, which was sunk, has been raised, repaired, and is again in use. On the Eighteenth Corps front wells have been sunk near the ditch of Fort Burnham to prevent mining by the enemy. The rear of other batteries have been stockaded; abatis has been strengthened along the lines. The saw-mills have been at work steadily all the week. The bridge at Aiken's needs resheathing and will be attended to during the coming week.
I have the honor to be, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
PETER S. MICHIE,
First Lieutenant, U. S. Engineers, Brevet Major, U.S. Army,
Acting Chief Engineer, Dept. of Virginia and North Carolina.
Bvt. Maj. Gen. J. G. BARNARD,
Chief Engineer, Combined Armies, City Point, Va.