Company E Hammock Guards letter
April 1, 1863
2nd Florida Camp
Company E, Hammock Guards
It gives your servant much pleasure to submit this report, sir,
regarding recent activities in the Narcoossee Mill region.
The Fifth Company was present with 13 actives both days. It was
good to see Captain Dennis Short in camp with his Third
Company. Within his ranks yours servant could have sworn he
saw a soldier who looked very much like your adjutant, Lt. Pat
Adkins. But this could not have been so as he was toting a musket.
I am not aware of any other Florida Battalion contingent
present. As in recent engagements, the Confederate Command
welcomed us with open arms and treated us with utmost respect.
On Day One, we served as the Fourth Company in General
Hardy's 2nd Battalion, commanded by Lt. Col. Keith Kohl.
After a short battalion drill in the morning, we were thrown into
battle as the Federals attacked the earthworks in force. Colonel
Kohl's orders to my command were short and direct: Take the
Fourth Company around the lake and engage the enemy. Needless
to say, I accepted this directive with much enthusiasm and was
most appreciative. After 50 minutes of rapid movement, going in
and out of skirmish formation, refusing both flanks as needed to
protect against Federal cavalry attacks, we were forced to give back
all the ground we had gained. It pains this command to inform
you that there were only three in my command standing at the
conclusion of the battle. As no wounds were mortal, all were able to
return to camp to fight another day.
On Day Two, in spite of the weather conditions being most
unfavorable, the Fifth Company left camp around noon and went on patrol in search of Federal activity in the region.
Approximately 1/2-mile to the east, we engaged the 75th Ohio,
commanded by Captain Barry King. As their numbers were
superior, we were forced to fight as skirmishers with extreme
intervals, using the cover of the woods as protection. After 45
minutes of intense activity, we returned three captured Yankees
to Colonel Kohl who advised your servant to take matters into
his own hands. As there was no time for a trial, the majority
voted to execute the prisoners. Cpl. Justin Kessler, Cpl. Musket
Ward and Pvt. Nate Greene have been sent to the devil, sir.
Only Pvt. Greene whimpered. A few hours later, the weather
cleared and we engaged the enemy again. This day proved to be
more favorable, as we cleared the ground of the enemy and won
This concludes my report, sir, and as I await your orders, I
Your obedient servant,
Capt. Clay Kearney
2nd Florida Volunteer Infantry
Company E, The Hammock Guards
Florida Battalion, CSA