I can not blame myself for coming up at the only season when the river rises. All the [other] rivers are full and rising; but Red river is falling at the rate of two inches per day — a most unusual occurrence — this river being always full till the middle of June.It was reported that the Rebels had induced this anomaly, by damming the outlets of several of the quite capacious lakes which discharge into this river. Gen. Banks remained at Grand Ecore till the fleet was well on its way below; meantime, the Rebel General Bee, with some 8,000 men and 16 guns, had taken a strong position at the crossing of Cane river, 40 miles below, and, with the river on one hand and an impenetrable swamp on the other, expected to stop here our army; which, when it should be deeply involved in front, the rest of the Rebel army was to strike in flank and rear. Banks, apprised of this arrangement, moved suddenly at daybreak1 from Grand Ecore, marching his army nearly the whole 40 miles, before halting for the night, so as to strike Bee unexpectedly next morning. Arrived at the river,2 Emory, with his 1st division, menaced the enemy directly in front; while Gen. H. W. Birge, with his own brigade and Col. Francis Fessenden's of the 19th (Franklin's) corps, moving three miles up stream, flanked the Rebel position, striking heavily on its right; the charge being led with great gallantry by Col. Fessenden, who was here severely wounded. The movement was a complete success: the worsted Rebels abandoning their position and retreating in disorder, on the Fort Jessup road, leading south-westward into Texas. Of course, the attack on Kilby Smith, covering our rear, failed also; the Rebel charge being repulsed, and not renewed. Mower's (16th) corps was in line on Kilby
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