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[36] skilful officer, made a brilliant assault; and after hard fighting his troops made their way through abatis and over rifle-pits inside the rebel intrenchments. At the same time the troops of McClernand and Wallace, encouraged by the words and confidence of Grant, renewed the battle and regained the ground they had lost earlier in the day. Night, however, came too soon for the entire success of the Union army. A half hour more of daylight and the fort would have been carried by storm. But without the cost of another assault the victory was won.

While the troops slept on the frozen ground which they had so bravely gained, the demoralized and beaten rebels were dreading a renewal of the battle, and their highest officers were preparing to desert the men who had fought under them. Floyd and Pillow, traitors to their cause and their comrades, as well as to their country, fled with as many troops as they could crowd into two steamers; and Buckner, the third in rank, was left to perform the disagreeable duty of surrendering. Buckner sent a messenger to General Grant, proposing an armistice and the appointment of commissioners to settle terms of capitulation. Grant's reply was prompt and decisive: “No terms except unconditional and immediate surrender can be accepted. I propose to move immediately upon your works.”

Buckner styled the terms “ungenerous and unchivalrous,” but he was compelled to accept them. Grant, however, though never exhibiting a weak generosity towards the enemy, was never wanting in proper magnanimity. He rode to the headquarters of Buckner, who was a cadet with him at West Point,

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