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[313] behind a friendly ridge and remain there; while McArthur's division, which had been ordered by Grant to reenforce McClernand, proved to be some miles distant, so that it did not arrive till next morning; and Quinby's two brigades came up, fully observed by the enemy, who correspondingly shifted their own forces. When these brigades came to hand, it was nearly dark; and Col. Boomer, commanding one of them, was killed as he led his men into action. Finally, at 8 P. M., our men were recalled from the more advanced and imperiled positions they had taken, leaving pickets to hold the ground solidly gained, wherever that was practicable; and our army sank to rest, having lost nearly 3,000 men in this wasteful assault--a third of them, Grant estimates, by reason of McClernand's mistake in supposing and reporting that he had carried two forts by his initial effort.1

Grant, in his report, gives the following excellent reasons for ordering this assault:

I believed an assault from the position gained by this time could be made successfully. It was known. that Johnston was at Canton with the force taken by him from Jackson, reenforced by other troops from the east, and that more were daily reaching him. With the force I had, a short time must have enabled him to attack me in the rear, and possibly to succeed in raising the siege. Possession of Vicksburg at that time would have enabled me to have turned upon Johnston and driven him from the State, and possess myself of all the railroads and practical military highways: thus effectually securing to ourselves all territory west of the Tombigbee; and tills before the season was too far advanced for campaigning in this latitude. It would have saved Government sending large reenforcements, much needed elsewhere; and, finally, the troops themselves were impatient to possess Vicksburg, and would not have worked in the trenches with the same zeal, believing it unnecessary, that they did after their failure to carry the enemy's works.

He afterward adds:

The assault of this day proved the quality of tile soldiers of this army. Without entire success, and with a heavy loss, there was no murmuring or complaining, no falling back, nor other evidence of demoralization.

After the failure of the 22d, I determined upon a regular siege. The troops row, being fully awake to the necessity of this, worked diligently and cheerfully. Tile work progressed rapidly and satisfactorily until the 3d of July, when all was about ready for a final assault.

Vicksburg was now completely invested; for Porter's gunboats watched the river above and below to prevent any escape to or succor from the Louisiana side; with 13-inch mortars and 100-pounder rifled Parrotts mounted on rafts, anchored under the high bank, whence, entirely out of harm's way, they could

1 The diary of a citizen of Vicksburg, who was a resident during the siege, gives the following account of this day's experiences within the city among civilians, who had only to consult their own safety:

The morning of this day opened in the same manner as the previous one had closed. There had been no lull in the shelling all night; and, as daylight approached, it grew more rapid and furious. Early in the morning, too, the battle began to rage in the rear. A terrible onslaught was made on the center first, and then extended farther to the left, where a terrific struggle took place, resulting in the repulse of the attacking party. Four gunboats also came up to engage the batteries. At this time, the scene presented an awfully sublime and terrific spectacle--three points being attacked at once; to wit, the rifle-pits by the enemy in the rear; the city by the mortars opposite; and the batteries by the gunboats. Such cannonading and shelling has perhaps scarcely ever been equaled; and the city was entirely untenable, though women and children were on the streets. It was not safe from behind or before; and every part of the city was alike within range of the Federal guns. The gunboats withdrew, after a short engagement: but the mortars kept up the shelling, and the armies continued fighting all day. Several desperate charges were made in force against the lines without accomplishing their object. It would require the pen of a poet to depict the awful sublimity of this day's work — the incessant booming of cannon and the banging of small arms, intermingled with the howling of shells, and tile whistling of Minie-balls, made the day truly most hideous.

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