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[64] and Carr's, on the Jackson and Vicksburgh road to St. Alban's; and thence by a cross road and Baldwin's Ferry road to Four-Mile Creek, arriving there about sunset, and resting there for the night, four miles from Vicksburgh. Several prisoners and wagons were captured during the march.

General Osterhaus resumed command of the Ninth division on the west bank of the Big Black, and General Lee was assigned the command of the First brigade of that division, during the absence of General Garrard, who had been ordered to report to General Prentiss, at Helena. Early on the morning of the nineteenth, accompanied by my staff, I made a personal reconnoissance to the brow of a long hill overlooking a creek two miles from Vicksburgh. This hill runs north and south, and conforms very much to the line of Vicksburgh's defences, in plain view, on a similar range, a mile west. The creek is, called Two-Mile Creek, because it is only two miles from Vicksburgh. Colonel Mudd came very near being shot by one of the enemy's pickets during the reconnoissance. The intervening space between these two ranges consists of a series of deep hollows separated by narrow ridges, both rising near the enemy's works and running at angles from them, until they are terminated by the narrow valley of Two-Mile Creek. The heads of the hollows and ridges were entirely open; nearer their termination, they were covered with a thicket of trees and underbrush.

At this time the picket and skirmishers of the enemy were in this thicket, watchful to discover and obstruct our advance.

The enemy's defences consisted of an extended line of rifle-pits, occupied by infantry and covered by a multitude of strong earthworks, occupied by artillery, so arranged as to command not only the approaches by the ravines and ridges, in front, but each other.

the siege of Vicksburgh.

Since four o'clock A. M., my command had been under orders to be in readiness to move forward and commence the investment of the city. By half-past 6 o'clock A. M., it came up, and in obedience to my order, formed behind the crest of the hill upon which I had been waiting-General Smith's division on the right of the Vicksburgh road, General Osterhaus's on the left, and General Carr's along the base of the hill as a reserve. Skirmishers were thrown forward, who engaged the enemy's skirmishers, and artillery was opened from the most commanding positions upon the enemy's works, and a body of infantry observed between them and Burbridge's brigade on my right.

In a short time the enemy's skirmishers fell back, and my line advanced across Two-Mile Creek to the hills on the opposite side.

About this time, (half-past 10 o'clock A. M.,) an order come from Major-General Grant, directing corps commanders to gain as close a position as possible to the enemy's works until two o'clock P. M., at that hour to fire three volleys from all their pieces in position, when a general charge of all the corps along the whole line should be made.

By two o'clock, with great difficulty, my line had gained a half-mile, and was within eight hundred yards of the enemy's defences. The ground in front was unexplored, and commanded by his works, yet at the appointed signal my infantry went forward, under such cover as my artillery could afford, and bravely continued a severe conflict until they had approached within five hundred yards of the enemy's lines, and exhaustion and the lateness of the evening intermitted it.

An advance had been made by all the corps and the ground gained was firmly held, but the enemy's works were not carried.

A number of brave officers and men fell, killed or wounded, and among the latter, General Lee, who had signalized his brief command by equal activity, intelligence, and gallantry. The command of his brigade devolved on Colonel Kaigwin, an able and worthy successor.

On the twentieth General Hovey brought up Colonel Slack's brigade of the Twelfth division, from Champion Hill, and supported General Osterhaus's on the left. General Carr supported General Smith on the right. Lively skirmishing continued during the twentieth and twenty-first, and nearer approach to the enemy's works was made, where it could be done. On the evening of the twenty-first I received an order from Major-General Grant of the same date, in material part as follows:

A simultaneous attack will be made to-morrow at ten o'clock A. M., by all the army corps of this army. During the day army corps commanders will have examined all practical routes over which troops can possibly pass. They will get in position all the artillery possible, and gain all the ground they can with their infantry and skirmishers.

At an early hour in the morning a vigorous attack will be commenced by artillery and skirmishers. The infantry, with the exception of reserves and skirmishers, will be placed in column of platoons, or by a flank, if the ground over which they may have to pass will not admit of a greater front, ready to move forward at the hour designated. Promptly at the hour designated all will start, at quick-time, with bayonets fixed, and march immediately upon the enemy, without firing a gun until the outer works are carried.

Skirmishers will advance as soon as possible after heads of columns pass them and scale the walls of such works as may confront them.

General Carr's division relieved General Smith's on the same day, and now formed the advance on the right, supported by the latter. On the left, dispositions continued as before. Communicating Major-General Grant's order to division commanders, during the same evening, as far a. practicable every thing was done calculated to insure success.

On the morning of the twenty-second I opened with artillery, including four thirty, six twenty

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