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[312] but no substantial success was achieved to balance the heavy loss.

Steele had like ill success in his attack; his men advancing across ravines and gullies to a point between the bastion and the Mississippi; whence they made their way, under a heavy fire, up to the parapet, which they failed to carry, but held possession of the hill-side beneath it till night; when they were withdrawn, like the rest.

The assault by McPherson's corps, in the center, was equally spirited and equally fruitless, save in carnage: our losses being probably tenfold those of the strongly fortified and thoroughly sheltered Rebels. Some ground was here gained in the assault; but it was mainly abandoned after dark.

On our left, McClernand's attack seemed for a time more effective, or, at least, was believed by him to be so. Rushing forward to the assault precisely at 10 A. M., Lawler's and Landrum's brigades had, within 15 minutes, carried the ditch, slope, and bastion, of the fort they confronted, which was entered by Sergeant Griffith and 11 privates of the 22d Iowa; all of whom fell in it but the Sergeant, who brought away 13 Rebels as prisoners. The colors of the 48th Ohio and 77th Illinois were planted on the bastion; and, within the next quarter of an hour, Benton's and Burbridge's brigades, fired by this example, had carried the ditch and slope of another strong earthwork, planting their colors on the slope; while Capt. White, of the Chicago Mercantile Battery, carried forward one of his guns by hand to the ditch, double-shotted it, and fired it into an embrasure, disabling a Rebel gun ready to be fired, and doubtless doing execution among its gunners.

McClernand supposed his assault successful, and reported to Grant that he had carried two of the Rebel forts; and again: “We have gained the enemy's intrenchments at several points, but are brought to a stand ;” at the same time asking for reenforcements. Grant, when he received the first dispatch, immediately ordered the assault on Sherman's front (where he then was) to be renewed; while he started back to his original position with McPherson in the center; which he had not reached when he received from McClernand the further message above cited; whereupon, though distrusting its accuracy, he ordered Quinby's division of McPherson's corps to report to McClernand; whose dispatches he showed to Mc-Pherson as an incitement to press the enemy in his front, so as to prevent a concentration against our left.

Nothing came of all this but aggravated losses — mainly on our side. McClernand's taking of the forts was after the well-known similitude of the captured Tartar: his men could get into them at the cost of not coming out again. Two hours later, he wrote again that: “I have lost no ground. My men are in two of the enemy's forts [which was partially true of his dead]; but they are commanded by rifle-pits in the rear. Several prisoners have been taken, who intimate that the rear is strong. At this moment, I am hard pressed.” And that was the sum total of our progress in this quarter: the assault of Osterhaus's and Hovey's divisions, farther to our left, having been promptly repulsed by a deadly enfilading fire, which drove them to take shelter

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