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[533] to remain as then posted, and all wagons to cross the river at once. Special instructions were left with Lieutenant J. II. Morrison, aide-de-camp, to be delivered to Generals Loring, Stevenson, and Bowen, as they should arrive, and were delivered to all, except to General Loring, as follows:
General Stevenson's division to cross the river and proceed to Mount Alban; General Lorings to cross and occupy tie west bank; Brigadier-General Bowen's division, as it should arrive, was directed to occupy the trenches to the right and left of Vanghan's, and his artillery to be parked, that it might be available for any point of the lines most threatened.

General Stevenson's division arriving very late in the night, did not move beyond Bovina, and I awaited in vain intelligence of the approach of General Loring. It was necessary to hold the position to enable him to cross the river, should the enemy, which was probable, follow him closely up. For this purpose alone, I continued the troops in position, until it was too late to withdraw them under cover of night. I then determined not to abandon so strong a front while there was yet a hope of his arrival. I have not, up to this time, received General Loring's report of the share taken by his division in the battle of Baker's Creek, nor have I yet been informed of the reason why he failed to rejoin the army under my command.

The Big Black River, where it is crossed by the railroad-bridge, makes a bend somewhat in the shape of a horseshoe. Across this horseshoe, at its narrowest part, a line of rifle-pits had been constructed, making an excellent cover for infantry, and at proper intervals dispositions were made for field-artillery. The line of pits ran nearly north and south, and was about one mile in length. North of, and for a considerable distance south of the railroad, and of a dirt-road to Edwards's Depot, nearly parallel with it, extended a bayou, which in itself opposed a serious obstacle to an assault upon the pits. This line abutted north on the river and

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