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Benson J. Lossing, Pictorial Field Book of the Civil War. Volume 3., Chapter 9: the Red River expedition. (search)
, saying he had directed General Steele to make a real move on Shreveport, instead of a demonstration only, as that officer had thought advisable. From time to time Banks was told that Steele would co-operate with him, but, at the close of April, the latter sent him word to the effect that co-operation with him was out of the question, for reasons that we shall observe presently. Before the gun-boats had passed up the rapids, General Banks's column, under General Franklin, advanced March 28, 1864. to Natchitoches, near the river, eighty miles above Alexandria by land, Natchitoches is on the margin of the old Red River, four miles southward of Grand Ecore, which is on the bank of the new channel of that stream. where he arrived on the 3d of April. The Confederates had continually retreated before him, frequently stopping to skirmish with his vanguard, but offering no serious resistance, and now they continued their flight toward Shreveport. At about the same time, General Smi