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n attempt to force a passage by the forts. To this end, it was essential that the cable should first be broken; and to Capt. Bell, with the gunboats Pinola and Itasca, supported by the Iroquois, Kennebec, and Winona, was assigned the conduct of thisda, Varuna, Katahdin, Kineo, and Wissahickon, was to hug the eastern bank, exchanging compliments with Fort St. Philip. Capt. Bell, with the third division--consisting of the Scioto, Iroquois, Pinola, Winona, Itasca, and Kennebec — was to keep the mi closely in his wake, followed his commendable example. All of his division passed the forts essentially uninjured. Capt. Bell's division was less fortunate. The Pinola, Scioto, and Iroquois, ran the gauntlet of the forts unharmed ; but the Itasin order to secure the cutting and grinding of the cane, so as to save the remaining inhabitants from death by famine. Maj. Bell, Lt.-Col. Kinsman, and Capt. Fuller, were appointed a commission, who were to take charge of all personal property, and
bine was blockaded by the Union gunboat Morning Light, 10 guns, and the schooner Velocity, 3 guns; which were attacked Jan. 21, 1863. by two Rebel gunboats — Josiah Bell and Uncle Ben--fitted out in the Sabine for the purpose, under command of Major O. M. Watkins, who chased our vessels out to sea and captured them after a very nce. Watkins reports his captures at 13 guns, 129 prisoners, and $1,000,000 worth of stores. The blockade of Galveston having barely been reestablished under Com. Bell, of the Brooklyn, a sail was descried Jan. 11, 3 1/2 P. M. in the south-east; when the gunboat Hatteras, Lt.-Com'g R. G. Blake, was signaled by Bell to overhaBell to overhaul her. The stranger affected to fly; but Blake soon observed that lie did not seem in any great hurry. Clearing his decks for action, he stood on; and, when four miles distant, he saw that the chase had ceased to steam and was waiting. Blake, whose guns were short as well as few, ran down to within 75 yards and hailed; when the
center, and causing a movement from that center to its support. Morning broke Dec. 15. auspiciously. The weather was still mild, and a dense fog, lasting till near noon, concealed our movements. Gen. A. J. Smith. with his thinned corps, with Wilson's cavalry on his right, now moved out on the Hardin pike, to flank the left of the enemy's infantry; while Johnson's cavalry division, advancing on the Charlotte pike, struck at Chalmers's cavalry on that wing and a Rebel battery, posted at Bell's landing on the Cumberland, which he attacked late that afternoon, in conjunction with our gunboats under Lt.-Com'r Fitch. They did not carry it; but it was evacuated during the ensuing night. Hatch's division of Wilson's cavalry first struck the enemy; driving him from his position, and taking prisoners and wagons. Swinging slightly to the left, Hatch, dismounting his men, assaulted and carried a redoubt, taking four guns, and turning them on their late possessors. A second stronger r
gely engrossed the attention and efforts of the besieged; thus enabling Curtis's brigade, leading Terry's column of assault, followed by Pennypacker's, and they by Bell's — having already gained, with moderate loss, partial shelter but 475 yards from the fort — to spring forward, under a heavy enfilading fire, over marshy and diff brigades, uniting, drove the enemy, by desperate fighting, from about one-quarter of the land-face. Gen. Ames, commanding the assaulting division, now brought up Bell's brigade, and placed it between the fort and the river, where the hollows whence sand had been dug for the parapet, the ruins of barracks and store-houses, and thre abandoned and blown up by the enemy: so that the triumph was complete. Our loss in this desperate assault was 110 killed, 536 wounded; but among these were Col. Bell, mortally, and Gen. N. M. Curtis and Col. G. A. Pennypacker, severely wounded, while leading their brigades in the assault. Gen. Hoke, with a considerable Reb