of Maj. Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks, U. S. Army, of operations in
YORK, April 6, 1865.
Hon. E. M. STANTON,
SIR: I have the honor
to transmit a report of the military operations of my command in the
Department of the Gulf in 1862, 1863, and 1864. It is prepared by
direction of the Adjutant-General. Being absent from the records, I have
been unable to state as fully and as much in detail as could be desired
the history of the different campaigns.
After the campaign of
Port Hudson, the troops were engaged immediately and continuously, and the
officers were, for that reason, unable to make detailed reports of the
operations of their respective commands.
I have been unable,
therefore, to name the officers who deserve the consideration and favor of
the Government for distinguished services, of whom there are many, and I
shall ask leave to submit an additional report upon that subject.
The details of the Port
Hudson campaign are drawn from such publications and dispatches of the
time as have been within my reach.
Any error that may
occur will be corrected at the earliest possible moment.
With much respect, your
SIR: The military
objects contemplated by the orders which I received upon assuming command
of the Department of the Gulf, dated November 8, 1862, were: The freedom
of the Mississippi; an expedition to Jackson and Marion after the fall of
Vicksburg and Port Hudson; and the occupation of the Red River country as
a protection for Louisiana and Arkansas and a basis of future operations
I assumed command of
the department December 16, 1862. The 18th of December, Brig. Gen. Cuvier
Grover, with 10,000 men, was ordered to take possession of Baton Rouge,
then held by the enemy. This was the first step toward the reduction of
The Island of
Galveston, Tex., had been captured in October, and was then occupied or
held by the navy. Information had been received, previous to my arrival in
New Orleans, of a contemplated attack for the recovery of that position by
the enemy. Upon consultation with Rear-Admiral D. G. Farragut and
Major-General Butler, both of whom recommended the measure, the
Forty-second Massachusetts Volunteers, Colonel Burrell commanding, was
sent to occupy the island, in support of the navy. Brig. Gen. A. J.
Hamilton, who had been commissioned as Military Governor of Texas, and who
accompanied my expedition to New Orleans, with a large staff, also pressed
my occupation of Texas with the greatest earnestness, and it was in
deference, in a great degree, to his most strongly expressed wishes, that
the expedition was undertaken, though it was fully justified by the
information which had been received of a proposed attack by the enemy, as
well as by the advice of the naval and military authorities of the
department. Three companies of this regiment, under command of Colonel
Burrell, arrived at Galveston Island on December 27, 1862, and, by the
advice of the naval officers, lauded on the 28th.
On the morning of
January 1, 1863, they were attacked by about 5,000 of the enemy, who
gained possession of the island by a bridge from the mainland, which had
been left unimpaired during the entire occupation of the island by our
forces. The naval forces were attacked at the same time by the cotton-clad
gunboats of the enemy, which resulted in the capture of our land force,
numbering 260 men, including their officers, the steamer Harriet Lane, two
coal transports, and a schooner, and the steamer Westfield was blown up by
its commanding officer. The losses in killed and wounded were but slight.
The balance of the regiment did not arrive at Galveston Island until
January 2, the day after the attack. Upon the discovery of the condition
of affairs by the capture of one of the rebel pilots, they returned to New
This attack upon our
forces had been in contemplation for a long time. It succeeded solely
because the bridge connecting the island with the mainland had been left
in possession of the enemy. Had the troops sent for its occupation arrived
a day or two earlier, or in sufficient time to have destroyed the bridge,
the attack would have been defeated.
The possession of this
island and its military occupation would have been of great importance to
the Government in all operations in that part of the country. It would
have held a large force of rebel troops in the vicinity of Houston,
enabled us to penetrate the territory of Texas at any time, or to
concentrate our forces on the Mississippi, and rendered unnecessary the
expedition of 1864 for the re-establishment of the flag in Texas.
Colonel Burrell and his
men remained in captivity more than a year, and, after much suffering,
were exchanged in the spring of 1864.
It is true, as stated
by Major-General Halleck in his report of November 15, 1863, as
General-in-Chief of the Army, that "this expedition was not
contemplated or provided for in General Banks' instructions." But,
having undoubted information of an immediate attack by the enemy, and of
the purpose entertained by General Butler to re-enforce the navy by a
detachment of land troops, as well as the direct approval of this purpose
by Admiral Farragut, as commander of the naval forces in the Gulf, it
would have been inexcusable, if not criminal, had I declined to maintain
the occupation of so important a position, when so slight a force was
required, upon the ground that it was not contemplated or provided for in
my instructions. I regarded the loss of Galveston in its consequences,
though not in the incidents immediately attending its capture, as the most
unfortunate affair that occurred in the department during my command.
Galveston, as a military position, was second in importance only to New
Orleans or Mobile.
The defensive positions
of the enemy in the department were Port Hudson, on the Mississippi, which
was strongly fortified, and held by a force of not less than 18,000 men;
on the Atchafalaya the water communications toward Red River were defended
by strong works at Butte -a-la- Rose, and on Bayou Teche by strong land
fortifications near Pattersonville, called Fort Bisland, extending from
Grand Lake on the right to impassable swamps on the left of the Bayou
Teche. Butte-a-la-Rose was defended by the gunboats of the enemy and a
garrison of 300 to 500 men, and Fort Bisland, on the Teche, by a force of
12,000 to 15,000 men, distributed from Berwick Bay to Alexandria and Grand
Ecore, on Red River. These positions covered every line of communication
to the Red River country and the Upper Mississippi.
The first object was to
reduce the works at Port Hudson. This could be done by an attack directly
upon the fortifications, or by getting possession of the Red River, for
the purpose of cutting off supplies received by the garrison from that
My command, upon my
arrival at New Orleans, with the troops that accompanied me, was less than
30,000. There were fifty-six regiments, of which twenty-two regiments were
enlisted for nine months only, the terms of service of a part expiring in
May, a part in July, and all in August. None of the regiments or men had
seen service, and few had even handled a musket.
The military positions
held by our forces extended from the Floridas to Western Texas, on the
Gulf, and upon the Mississippi from its mouth to Port Hudson. Key West,
Pensacola, and Ship Island, on the Gulf, were strongly garrisoned, and
threatened constantly with attack by the enemy. Forts Jackson and Saint
Philip, and English Bend, on 'the lower river; New Orleans, Bonnet Carr,,
Donaldsonville, Plaquemine, and Baton Rouge, on the upper river; and Forts
Pike and Macomb, on Lake Pontchartrain, leading to the Gulf, and Berwick
Bay, were open to the incursions of the enemy, and, necessarily, strongly
held by our forces. None of these could be evacuated, except the town of
Pensacola, leaving a garrison in the permanent works at the navy-yard. All
these positions were constantly threatened by an active and powerful
enemy, who could concentrate at any point he pleased. That at Galveston
had been captured by a force of not less than 24 men to 1. It was deemed
inexpedient, with but slight knowledge of the condition of affairs, in the
absence of any absolute necessity, to greatly weaken or expose any
position then in our possession.
After garrisoning these
numerous posts, the strongest force I could command for permanent
offensive operations against Port Hudson did not exceed 12,000 or 14,000.
It was impossible to attack so strong a position, garrisoned by a force so
much larger, with any chance of success. Attention was, therefore, turned
west of the Mississippi to the Atchafalaya and Teche, with a view of
getting command of these waters, by which our gunboats could reach Red
River, and communicate with the forces, naval and military, at Vicksburg,
and cut off the supplies of the enemy west of the Mississippi. The first
effort to accomplish this was made in an unsuccessful endeavor to open the
Bayou Plaquemine, which communicated with the Atchafalaya near
The command of
Brigadier-General Weitzel, on Berwick Bay, had been increased the first
and second weeks in January to 4,500 men, with a view to operations upon
the Teche, for the purpose of destroying the works and dispersing the
forces of the enemy on that bayou.
On January 11, he made
a successful invasion of the Teche country, repulsed the forces of the
enemy, and destroyed the gunboat Cotton. This relieved Berwick Bay from
the danger of an attack by the enemy's most formidable gunboat, in case
our forces, naval and military, moved up the Atchafalaya toward
Butte-a-la- Rose. An attempt was then made to get possession of
Butte-a-la-Rose, by combining the command of Weitzel, moving up the
Atchafalaya, with that of General Emory, moving from the Mississippi by
Bayou Plaquemine, their forces joining near Butte-a-la-Rose.
This attempt failed on
account of the complete stoppage of Bayou Plaquemine by three years'
accumulation of drift-logs and snags, filling the bayou from the bed of
the stream, and rendering it impenetrable to our boats, and requiring the
labor of months to open it for navigation. The troops were engaged in this
work the most of the month of February.
During these operations
on Bayou Plaquemine and the Atchafalaya, news was received of the capture
by the enemy of the steamers Queen of the West and De Soto, which had run
past the batteries at Vicksburg. This event was deemed of sufficient
importance by Admiral Farragut to demand the occupation of the Mississippi
between Port Hudson and Vicksburg, by running the batteries on the river
at Port Hudson, in order to destroy these boats and cut off the enemy's
communication by the Red River with Vicksburg and Port Hudson, thus
accomplishing, by a swifter course, the object of our campaign west of the
The army was called
upon to make a demonstration against the fortifications at Port Hudson,
while the fleet should run the batteries upon the river. All the
disposable force of the department was moved to Baton Rouge for this
purpose early in March.
On March 13, the troops
moved out to the rear of Port Hudson, about 12,000 strong. The pickets of
the enemy were encountered near Baton Rouge, and a considerable force in
the vicinity of Port Hudson, which was quickly driven in. The army reached
the rear of the works on the night of the 14th, and made a demonstration
as for an attack on the works the next morning.
The arrangement between
the admiral and myself was that the passage of the batteries by the navy
should be attempted in the gray of the morning, the army making a
simultaneous attack on the fortifications in the rear; but affairs
appearing to be more favorable to the fleet than was anticipated, the
object was accomplished in the evening and during the night of the 14th.
Naval history scarcely presents a more brilliant act than the passage of
these formidable batteries.
The army returned to
Baton Rouge the next day, the object of the expedition having been
announced in general orders as completely accomplished. Our loss in this
affair was very slight, the enemy not resisting us with any determination
until we were in the vicinity of their outer works. Col. John S. Clark, of
my staff, received a wound while closely reconnoitering the position of
the enemy, which disabled him from further participation in the campaign.
Pending these general
movements, a force, under command of Col. Thomas S. Clark, of the Sixth
Michigan Volunteers, was sent out from New Orleans to destroy the bridge
at Ponchatoula, and a small force, under Col. F. S. Nickerson, of the
Fourteenth Maine Volunteers, to destroy the enemy's communication by the
Jackson Railroad and the bridges on the Amite River. Both these objects
were successfully accomplished.
Endeavors were made at
this time to collect at Baton Rouge a sufficient force to justify an
attack upon Port Hudson, either by assault or siege; but the utmost force
that could be collected for this purpose did not exceed 12,000 or 14,000
men. To withdraw the force of Weitzel from Berwick Bay would open the La
Fourche to the enemy, who had 10,000 or 15,000 men upon the Teche, and the
withdrawal of the forces from New Orleans would expose that city to the
assault of the enemy from every point. The strength of the enemy at Port
Hudson was then believed to be from 18,000 to.20,000. It is now known with
absolute certainty that the garrison on the night of March 14 was not less
than 16,000 effective troops.
The statement of the
General-in-Chief of the Army, in his report of November 15, 1863, that,
had our forces invested Port Hudson at this time it could have been easily
reduced, as its garrison was weak, was without any just foundation.
Information received from Brig. Gen. W. N. R. Beall, one of the officers
in command of Port Hudson at this time, as well as from other officers,
justifies this opinion. It was inadvisable, therefore, to make an attack
upon Port Hudson, either by assault or siege, with any expectation of a
successful issue. Operations, therefore, on the waters west of the
Mississippi were immediately resumed. While at Baton Rouge, an attempt was
made to force a passage to the upper river, across a point of land
opposite to Port Hudson. This was successfully accomplished after some
days, but without establishing communication with the admiral, who had
moved to the Red River. In one of these expeditions the chief signal
officer and a party of his men were taken prisoners opposite Port Hudson.
Orders were given on
March 25 to take up the line of march to Bra-shear City. The rebel
steamers Queen of the West and Webb were reported at Butte- a-la-Rose, on
the Atchafalaya, and it was understood that the enemy, supposing my
command to be fixed at Port Hudson, threatened to move at once upon the La
Fourche and New Orleans. Weitzel reached Brashear City on April 8, and
Grover and Emory on the 9th and 10th. They commenced crossing Berwick Bay
on the 9th. It was a very slow process, on account of the want of
transportation, but Weitzel and Emory succeeded in crossing by dark on the
10th, their transportation an d supplies being sent over the same night
and the following morning. General Grover arrived on the 10th, in the
evening, and his command was immediately put on board the transports of my
command, and sent up the Atchafalaya and Grand Lake, to turn the enemy's
position, landing his force at Indian Bend, above Fort Bisland. It was
estimated that his movement and landing would require about twelve hours,
but the difficulties of navigating unknown rivers made his voyage longer
than was anticipated. His boats could not come within 1¼ miles of the
shore on account of shoal water, and he was obliged to use flat-boats to
land his men and artillery. After Grover's departure, we advanced directly
upon Franklin, a distance of 20 miles, encountering small bodies of the
enemy during the march.
On the 13th, we had
advanced within 400 yards of his works, on both sides of the Bayou Teche,
driving him to his fortifications and destroying the gunboat Diana, which
he had captured from us a short time before. This battle lasted the whole
day. We captured many prisoners. Our troops were ready for an assault upon
the works in the evening, but it not being certain that Grover had reached
the position assigned him for the purpose of intercepting the retreat of
the enemy, it was deferred until the morning of the 14th.
During the night, the
enemy, learning of Grover's successful landing, sent a large part of his
force to attack him at Irish Bend. The fight was very severe. The enemy
was defeated, but Grover was unable to get into such position as to cut
off his retreat.
Early on the following
morning, the balance of the enemy's forces evacuated Fort Bisland, which
was immediately occupied by our troops, and we pursued the enemy with
great vigor, capturing many prisoners. The enemy's forces in this affair
were commanded by Generals Taylor, Sibley, and Mouton. They retreated
toward Opelousas, making a strong resistance at Vermillion Bayou, from
which position they were quickly driven. The gunboats in the meantime had
encountered the steamer Queen of the West on Grand Lake, destroying her,
and capturing her officers and crew.
We reached Opelousas
April 20, the enemy retreating toward Alexandria in disorder, and
destroying the bridges in his flight. The same day the gunboats, under
command of Lieut. Commander A. P. Cooke, assisted by four companies of
infantry, captured the works at Butte-a-la-Rose, which contained two heavy
guns and a large quantity of ammunition, and was garrisoned by a force of
60 men, all of whom were captured.
These works constituted
the key of the Atchafalaya, and, being in our possession, opened the way
to Red River.
On May 2, we
established communication with Admiral Farragut, at the mouth of Red
River, through the Atchafalaya, by the gunboat Arizona, Captain
Upton commanding, accompanied by Capt. R. T. Dunham, of my staff.
On May 5, our
headquarters at Opelousas were broken up, and the troops moved for
Alexandria, a distance of from 90 to 100 miles, making this march in three
days and four hours. Moving rapidly to the rear of Fort De Russy, a strong
work on Red River, we compelled the immediate evacuation of that post by
the enemy, and enabled the fleet of gun-boats, under Admiral Porter, to
pass up to Alexandria without firing a gun. The army reached Alexandria
May 9, in the evening, the navy having reached there the morning of the
same day. The enemy continued his retreat in the direction of Shreveport.
In order to completely
disperse the forces of the enemy, a force under Generals Weitzel and
Dwight pursued him nearly to Grand Ecore, so thoroughly dispersing him
that he was unable to reorganize a respectable force until July, more than
five weeks after we had completed the investment of Port Hudson.
During these operations
on the Teche we captured over 2,000 prisoners and twenty-two guns;
destroyed three gunboats and eight steamers; captured large quantities of
small-arms, ammunition, mails, and other public property, and the steamers
Ellen and Cornie, which were of great service to us in the campaign.
A letter from General
Taylor, commanding at Fort Bisland, was captured with an officer of the
Queen of the West, which informed us that the enemy had contemplated an
attack upon our forces at Brashear City, April 12, the day before the
assault was made by us upon Fort Bisland, and a subsequent dispatch from
Governor Moore to General Taylor was intercepted by General Dwight, in
which Taylor was directed, in case he was pursued beyond Alexandria, to
fall back into Texas with such of his forces as he could keep together.
The purpose of the enemy in retreating up the Teche was to draw off toward
Texas, on our left flank, for the purpose of cutting off our supplies by
the Teche. But the capture of Butte-a-la-Rose enabled us to open a new
line of communication through the Atchafalaya and Courtableau direct to
Washington and Barre's Landing, within 6 miles of Opelousas; and upon
reaching Alexandria we were enabled to establish a third line of
communication by the Atchafalaya and Red Rivers. These were interior
waters, wholly inaccessible to the enemy, and made perfectly safe lines of
communication during our occupation of that country.
While at Brashear City,
I had received a dispatch from Admiral Farragut, by Mr. Gabaudan, his
secretary, informing me that General Grant would send 20,000 men by May 1
through the Tensas, Black, and Red Rivers, for the purpose of uniting with
us in the reduction of Port Hudson. It was felt that this re-enforcement
was necessary, and would secure the speedy reduction of that position.
On reaching Alexandria,
I received two dispatches from General Grant, one dated April 23, stating
that he could spare us a re-enforcement of 20,000 men, if we could supply
them, and the other, dated May 5, proposing to send one army corps to
Bayou Sara by May 25, and asking that I should then send all the troops I
could spare to Vicksburg after the reduction of Port Hudson.
To both of these plans
I consented, and answered that we could supply them from New Orleans, and
that this force would insure the capture of Port Hudson; but I was
afterward informed by a dispatch, dated Auburn, May 10, which I received
May 12, that he had crossed the Mississippi, landing his forces at Grand
Gulf, and was then in close pursuit of the enemy, under such circumstances
that he could not retrace his steps nor send me the forces he had
contemplated, and requesting me to join his command at Vicksburg.
This change in his
plans was a cause of serious embarrassment. There were three courses open
to my command: First, to pursue the enemy to Shreveport, which would be
without public advantage, as his army had been captured or completely
routed; secondly, to join General Grant at Vicksburg; and, thirdly, to
invest Port Hudson with such forces as I had at my command.
It was impossible for
me to move my forces to General Grant at Vicksburg for want of sufficient
water transportation. I had barely steamers enough to put my troops across
Berwick Bay and the Atchafalaya, and on the morning after the passage of
the bay, when our forces had turned the enemy's position, and the troops
under Emory and Weitzel had advanced directly upon his works, there was
not a single boat of any kind left with which I could communicate with
Brashear City across the bay. It seemed impossible for me at that time to
transport any portion of my troops and artillery to General Grant without
leaving my trains and 6,000 fugitive negroes, who had come within our
lines, to the chances of capture by the enemy. Besides, it was perfectly
clear that, in the event of the movement of my forces to Vicksburg, unless
that post should immediately fall, the rebel garrison at Port Hudson, then
16,000 to 18,000 strong, would prevent our communication with New Orleans,
and, in the event of any disaster by which we should be detained at
Vicksburg, would hold that city at its mercy. The force west of the
Mississippi, which I had dispersed, would reorganize by re-enforcements
from Texas, and move directly upon the La Fourche and Algiers, opposite
New Orleans, both of which were nearly defenseless. This was so apparent
to my mind that I felt that a compliance with the request of General Grant
would result in the loss of my trains, the recapture of the negroes who
were following the army, and the probable loss of New Orleans. This
conclusion was justified by the subsequent invasion and occupation of the
west bank of the river, and a most desperate attack by the Louisiana and
Texas forces, 12,000 strong, on the works at Donaldsonville, June 28. I
therefore concluded to move immediately against Port Hudson, and to take
my chances for the reduction of that post.
To avoid mistake, I
directed Brig. Gen. William Dwight to report our condition to General
Grant in person and solicit his counsel. General Dwight returned with the
advice that I attack Port Hudson without delay, and that he would give me
5,000 men, but that I should not wait for them.
My command moved from
Alexandria on May 14 and 15, a portion going down the river, and the
remainder marching by land to Simsport, crossing the Atchafalaya at that
point with great difficulty, by means of our transports and the steamers
we had captured, and from thence moved down the right bank of the
Mississippi to Bayou Sara, crossing the Mississippi at that point on the
night of the 23d, and moving directly upon the enemy's works at Port
Hudson, a distance of 15 miles, on May 24.
Maj. Gen. C. C. Augur,
commanding the forces at Baton Rouge, about 3,500 men, had been directed
to effect a junction with our forces in the rear of Port Hudson. He
encountered the enemy at Plains Store, about 4 miles from Port Hudson,
repulsing him with a loss of 150 killed, wounded, and prisoners, and
effected a junction with the rest of our forces on the 25th.
Our right wing, under
Generals Weitzel, Grover, and Dwight, who succeeded General Emory,
encountered the enemy outside of his works on the afternoon of the 24th,
and, after a very sharp fight, drove him to his outer line of
On the 25th, the
junction of all the forces having been completed, the works of the enemy
were invested. Preparations were immediately made for an assault. Rumors
had been circulated for several days previous that the enemy had abandoned
the position, and it was impossible to obtain definite information of his
strength. It was generally supposed, however, that the force had been
greatly diminished, and that an assault would result in its capture.
A very thorough
preparation was made on the 25th and 26th, and on May 27 a desperate
attack upon the works was made, Generals Weitzel, Grover, and Dwight
commanding our right, General Augur the center, and General T. W. Sherman
the left. The plan of attack contemplated simultaneous movements on the
right and left of our lines. The attack upon the right commenced with
vigor early in the morning. Had the movement upon the left been executed
at the same time, it is possible the assault might have been successful.
But the garrison was much stronger than had been represented, and the
enemy was found able to defend his works at all points.
The conduct of the
troops was admirable, and most important advantages were gained, which
contributed to the success of all subsequent movements. At one time our
advance had reached the interior line of the enemy, but were unable to
hold their position. Nothing but the assault would have satisfied the
troops of the presence or strength of the enemy and his works.
Our loss in this
engagement was 293 killed and 1,549 wounded. We were unable to estimate
with accuracy the loss of the enemy, but it was very severe. In one
regiment, the Fifteenth Arkansas, out of 292 officers and men, the loss
sustained during the siege, according to a history of the defense by a
rebel officer, was 132, of whom 76 fell on May 27. The force of the enemy
within the fortifications numbered from 7,000 to 8,000, with 2,500 cavalry
in our rear at Clinton, and a small force on the west side of the river,
commanding a point opposite the enemy's batteries, making altogether
between 10,000 and 11,000 men engaged in the defense of the position,
inside and outside the works.
The operations in the
Teche country, with the losses sustained in battle and sickness occasioned
by rapid and exhausting marches, had reduced my effective force to less
than 13,000, including Augur's command. Of these, twenty regiments were
nine-months' men, whose terms began to expire in May, and all expired in
August. This was not an adequate force for the capture of the place. There
ought not to have been less than 3 to 1 for this purpose. The force that
we had anticipated receiving from General Grant, promised in the several
communications to which I have referred, would have enabled us, on the
27th, beyond any question, to have completed the capture of the works and
garrison, when we could have immediately moved to Vicksburg to aid him in
his attack on that place, without exposing New Orleans or any other post
on the Lower Mississippi to capture by the enemy.
On the night of the
27th, the army rested within rifle-shot of the enemy's works, and
commenced the construction of works of defense. The enemy's interior line
extended from 4 to 5 miles, from river to river. The line occupied by us
necessarily covered from 7 to 8 miles. Our greater length of line made the
enemy equal, if not superior, in numbers in any attack that could be made
by us upon them.
From the night of May
27 until June 14, we occupied this line. Another partially successful
assault was then made. An incessant and harassing fire was kept up upon
the enemy night and day, leaving him without rest or sleep.
On June 10, a heavy
artillery fire was kept up, and at 3 o'clock on the morning of the 11th we
endeavored to get within attacking distance of the works, in order to
avoid the terrible losses incurred in moving over the ground in front of
the works; but the enemy discovered the movement before daybreak. A
portion of the troops worked their way through the abatis to the lines,
but were repulsed with the loss of several prisoners.
On June 14, a second
general assault was made at daylight. A column of a division was posted on
the left, under General Dwight, with the intention of getting an entrance
to the works by passing a ravine, while the main attack on the right was
made by the commands of Grover and Weitzel. Neither column was successful
in fully gaining its object, but our lines were advanced from a distance
of 300 yards to distances of from 50 to 200 yards from the enemy's line of
fortifications, where the troops intrenched themselves and commenced the
construction of new batteries. On the left, an eminence was gained which
commanded a strong point held by the enemy, called the citadel, and which,
later, enabled us to get possession of a point of the same bluff upon
which the citadel was constructed, within 10 yards of the enemy's lines.
This day's work was of great importance; but it was now felt that our
force was unequal to the task of carrying the works by assault, and the
slower, but more certain, operations of the siege were commenced.
The fighting had been incessant night and day for a period of twenty-one days and nights, giving the enemy neither rest nor sleep. During these operations the nine-months' men, whose terms had expired or were about to expire, were dissatisfied with their situation, and unwilling to enter upon duty involving danger. Great embarrassment and trouble was caused by the conduct of some of these troops, one regiment, the Fourth Massachusetts, being in open mutiny.
also siege of Port Hudson, p. 43, the Sabine Pass Expedition, p. 286,
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