Sabine Pass. 133
to the whole Confederate forces to speak of the garrison of the earth- work at Sabine Pass as the "forty bravest men of the Confederacy" as it is to insinuate that the Union naval and military forces, lying out in the Gulf of Mexico, have any reason to be ashamed of the failure to capture a place they could not reach in vessels drawing fourteen to twenty-five feet of water, which was the case with the ex- ception of those I have named, and which experience demonstrated drew too much to navigate a channel in which there could not have been much more, if any, than seven feet.
Mr. Davis was undoubtedly misled, and did not know that if the garrison had abandoned their post at any time during the Federal reconnoisance— for that was all it was, in point of fact — they should have been courtmartialed for cowardice; because how- ever meritorious their action in " holding the fort" may have been, it is absolutely certain that they were never exposed to any real danger of capture or injury from the Federals, who did not fire a dozen shots altogether, and from which the garrison was perfectly protected by the earth-work.
Very respectfully yours,
Frederic Speed, Formerly A. A. Ge?ieral ist Divisioyi igth Army Corps.
PRESIDENT DAVIS'S ACCOUNT.
[In order that our readers may have "the other side," and that there may go into our record a full and authentic narrative ot this heroic action, we copy the account given by President Davis in "Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government."]
The strategic importance to the enemy of the possession of Sabine fiver caused the organization of a large expedition of land and naval forces to enter and ascend the river. If successful, it gave the enemy short lines for operation against the interior of Texas, and relieved them of the discomfiture resulting from their expulsion from Gal- veston Harbor.
The fleet of the enemy numbered twenty-three vessels. The forces were estimated to be ten thousand men. No adequate provision had been made to resist such a force, and, under the circumstances, none might have been promptly made on which reliance could have been • reasonably placed. A few miles above the entrace into the Sabine river a small earthwork had been constructed, garrisoned at the time