James Island, SC
Battery #5 as it appears today.
Plan view of Battery #5 by Union troops, 1865.
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Battery Number 5 was one of several Confederate earthworks constructed on the southwest portion of James Island in the summer of 1863. It was a significant part of the “New Line” or “Siege Line” intended to defend Charleston from Federal attacks up the Stono or Folly Rivers. This line replaced the 1861-62 lines that ran across James Island from Clark Sound to Wappoo Creek.
Battery No. 5 is the eastern terminus of the siege line ordered to be constructed in 1863 by General Beauregard. This earth redan, approximately 500 feet in length, was constructed on the Hills Plantation, designed to defend against an infantry attack from the south and supplemented the fire-power of the Tower Battery at Secessionville.
In April 1864, Battery Number 5 was manned by Company H of the 2nd South Carolina Artillery, commanded by Captain W. H. Kennady. Its armament at that time was three 24-pounder smoothbore cannon and one 12-pounder smoothbore cannon. This battery and the rest of Charleston’s defenses were evacuated on February 17, 1865. Federal troops found the battery armed with four guns, including one 12-pound smoothbore gun, one 8-inch howitzer and two 24-pound smoothbore guns.
Battery No. 5 was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1982 and is currently owned by the South Carolina Battleground Preservation Trust.
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