Michael, wanted to make a reconnaissance of our works and batteries, and that General Osten-Sacken would only allow them to do so in perfect safety.

In the evening of the 25th instant Sir Edmund Lyons sent up an express to Lord Raglan, informing him that just before dusk the Russians had sunk four more large ships, in a line across the harbour of Sevastopol, apparently between Fort Constantine on the south, and Fort Michael on the north, side. It was thought that one of these was a ship of the line, and the other three frigates. He also informed Lord Raglan that during the day a very large workingparty had been employed in commencing the construction of a large earthwork (probably a battery) on the north side, facing Sevastopol. On this intelligence being received, it was suggested by some one that the object of the enemy in sinking these ships was to form a foundation on which to construct a bridge of rafts or boats across the harbour. This idea, however, was laughed at by the officers of the Royal Engineers, as they considered such an idea perfectly impracticable.

For the last three days Lord Raglan has been going round the whole of the English defences and siege-works, and also the new French attack on the right, with General Jones and the principal officers of artillery and engineers. When the weather is more settled, a great increase of our works against the town is to take place; but the general arrange

ment first made by Sir John Burgoyne is still to be carried out, though with considerable additions.

Yesterday, Lord Raglan, accompanied by Sir Edmund Lyons, rode out to the advanced French pickets before Inkermann, and then walked to the right of their new trenches, to look at the position of two Russian steamers, anchored high up in the harbour, and which for a long time past have annoyed the pickets and outposts with the fire from their heavy guns. From their isolated position (they being at a considerable distance from the other ships in the harbour) it struck Colonel Steele (military secretary) that a few boats from the fleet, manned with AB seamen, under the direction of a clever and enterprising officer, might undertake a cutting-out expedition at night against these vessels: if successful, after capturing the crews, the steamers might be set on fire; they would inevitably be destroyed, and probably endanger the safety of other ships.

Colonel Steele stated his idea to Captain Peel, R.N., who immediately jumped at the proposal, and said, that, with the sanction of the Admiral, Sir Edmund Lyons, he would be only too glad to undertake the service. In consequence of this, Lord Raglan and Sir Edmund went to reconnoitre the position of the ships, and to consider whether the plan was feasible. I understand that Sir Edmund thought that the hazard would be too great; and in the event of the boats and crews being lost, great inconvenience

would accrue to the fleet, independent of the responsibility that would be attached to the Admiral who would sanction so desperate an undertaking. The idea, therefore, was given up; but so important did Lord Raglan consider the destruction, or compulsory removal, of these steamers, that orders were given to construct a battery for 3 heavy guns to fire upon them. General Pennefather arrived yesterday morning at Balaklava, having been a cruise to Malta and back, for the recovery of his health. He is looking remarkably well; and to-day went up to the front, and resumed the command of the 2nd Division, to the delight of his officers and men.

I have not mentioned the railway for some little time. It is progressing, and at the present moment brings up all the heavy ordnance for the siege, and also a considerable amount of commissariat stores, from Balaklava to Kadakoi; thus saving over a mile of animal transport.

It is reported, and I believe with perfect truth, that the Emperor Napoleon has signified to General Canrobert his intention of visiting the Crimea early in the ensuing spring. This intelligence, when known to the French army, will be received with the highest satisfaction, as the great name which the Emperor bears, and its connection with the imperial army, will be looked upon by them as a good omen of future success.


False reports of the newspapers -French do not renew their attack upon the Russian Ouvrages Blancs bert's proposal


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Leblanc Prince Gortschakoff - Grand sortie by the enemy on the trenches of the Allies on night of March 22 Death of Captain Vicars Casualties — Trip to Eupatoria - Colonels Simmons and Ogilvie Fortifications of the town circumvallation Said Ali Turkish troops at Eupatoria - Russian force in the neighbourhood - Skender Bey Buildings in Eupatoria — “Henri IV.” — Flag of truce Electric telegraph.

Head-quarters before Sevastopol,
March 6th, 1855.

SINCE I wrote to you on the 27th ultimo we have had every variety of weather: to-day and the last two days have been beautiful, with a bright, warm sun; before that there was nothing but rain and snow. If we were to believe the information of the newspapers, it would seem that Lord Raglan is to be recalled, and the general Staff all changed. Nobody,

however, gives the slightest credit to the report. General Simpson and Sir John M'Neill are daily expected out here; the former is to be Chief of the Staff, performing the same functions as the Chef d'Etat Major of the French army; and the latter is sent out as the Chief Commissioner from the Government to inquire into and investigate the arrangements and conduct of the Commissariat. Lieutenant-colonel M'Murdo arrived here some days ago. He has been sent out as Director-general of the Land Transport Service about to be organized, and which is eventually to be entirely taken out of the hands of the Commissariat, in which department it now is. Nothing of importance has occurred as regards the siege-works of the Allies since I last wrote.

On the morning of the 24th ultimo, after the repulse of the French by the Russians, Lord Raglan strongly urged upon General Canrobert the importance of renewing the attack, and even offered the co-operation of some of the English troops. However, General Canrobert very properly said, that, as the work was in no way opposed to our trenches, it was a purely French affair; besides which, he doubtless felt that it would be a slur upon the French troops to call in the aid of the British merely to capture an unfinished work. Accordingly, I understand that it was the intention of General Canrobert

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