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To terminate a sanguinary contest which had continued for several hours, General Hovey ordered a charge, which was most gallantly executed, and resulted in the capture of four hundred prisoners, two stands of colors, two twelve-pounder howitzers, three caissons, and a considerable quantity of ammunition. A portion of General Carr's division joined in this charge. About this time I heard that Major-General Grant had come up from Bruinsburgh, and soon after had the pleasure of meeting him on the field.

Determined to press my advantages, I ordered Generals Carr and Hovey to push the enemy with all vigor and celerity. This they did, beating him back over a mile, and frustrating all his endeavors to make an immediate stand. For particular mention of the regiments, companies, officers, and men who distinguished themselves in this daring charge, I would refer to the reports of these Generals.

Returning to bring up the narrative of other operations: General Smith's division came up to Shaiffer's about seven o'clock A. M., and just before General Hovey moved to the support of General Carr. The four divisions of my corps were now upon the field, three of them actually engaged and the fourth eager to be. The last was immediately moved into the field, in front of Shaiffer's house, and together with a portion of Osterhaus's division held the centre, and at the same time formed a reserve.

The second position taken by the enemy on my right front was stronger than the first. It was in a creek bottom, covered with trees and underbrush, the approach to which was over open fields, and ragged and exposed hill slopes. Having advanced until they had gained a bald ridge overlooking the bottom, General Hovey's and Carr's divisions again encountered the enemy's fire. A hot engagement ensued, in the course of which, discovering that the enemy was moving a formidable force against my right front with the evident design to force it back and turn my right flank, I ordered General Smith to send forward a brigade to support that flank. Burbridge's brigade rapidly moved forward for that purpose. Meanwhile General Hovey massed his artillery on the right and opened a partially enfilading and most destructive fire on the enemy. The effect of these combined movements was to force the enemy back with considerable loss upon his centre.

Here with a large concentration of forces, he renewed the attack, directing it against my right centre. General Carr met and returned it, both with infantry and artillery, with great vigor. At the same time Landrum's brigade of General Smith's division, reinforced by a detachment from General Hovey's division, forced its way through cane and underbrush and joined in Carr's attack. The battle was now transferred from the enemy's left to his centre, and after an obstinate struggle he was again beaten back upon the high ridge on the opposite side of the bottom, and within a mile of Port Gibson.

General Stevenson's brigade of General Logan's division came up in time to assist in consummating this final result. The shades of night soon after closed upon the stricken field which the valor of our men had won and held, and upon which they found the first repose since they had left D'Schron's Landing twenty-four hours before.

At day-dawn, on the morning of the second, Smith's division, leading the advance, and followed by the rest of my corps, triumphantly entered Port Gibson, through which place and across the south branch of Bayou Pierre the enemy had hastily fled the night before, burning the bridge across that stream in his rear.

This, the battle of Port Gibson or Bayou Pierre, was one of the most admirably and successfully fought battles, in which it has been my lot to participate since the present unhappy war commenced. If not a decisive battle, it was determinate of the brilliant series of successes that followed. It continued twelve hours, and cost us eight hundred and three men killed and wounded; of which the Ninth division lost thirty-seven killed and one hundred and seventy-six wounded; the Tenth division, two killed and sixteen wounded; the Twelfth division, forty-two killed and two hundred and sixty-six wounded; and the Fourteenth division, forty-two killed and two hundred and twenty-two wounded, making the aggregate above named, including eight reported missing.

The loss of the enemy was three stands of colors, four pieces of cannon, three caissons, a quantity of ammunition, a number of small arms and ammunition-wagons, and five hundred and eighty prisoners. His loss in killed and wounded is not known, but it must have been considerable.

Remaining at Port Gibson, on the second of May my corps assisted in constructing a bridge across the south branch of Bayou Pierre, under the direction of Lieutenant-Colonel Wilson, Engineer and Aid-de-camp on Major-General Grant's staff; reconnoitred the country east and north of that stream, and skirmished with a detachment left by the enemy on the north side of it, to watch our movements.

On the night of the second the fugitive enemy was met by reenforcements reported to be on their way from Grand Gulf and Vicksburgh, and communicating their fears to the latter, the whole fled across Big Black. The panic also extended to the garrison at Grand Gulf, only seven miles from Port Gibson, who spiked their guns and hastily abandoning the place, also fled across the same river. Next day a naval force took possession of the place without resistance.

On the same day Brigadier-General Lawler, having reported to me for duty under Major-General Grant's order, was assigned to the command of the Second brigade of General Carr's division.

March from Port Gibson to Champion Hill.

On the third, agreeably to your instructions, my corps, save Lawler's brigade, which was left behind temporarily to garrison Port Gibson, marched on the Raymond road to Willow Springs; on the sixth to Rocky Spring; on the eighth to Little Sand; and on the <*>inth to Big Sand.

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E. A. Carr (7)
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