the enemy's side, for the purpose of strengthening them. They followed the course of the ditch, which had many and sharp turns. In some places, where the works were higher than the guns, the earth was cut away, for the purpose of getting a clear range. On the west side, to the left, ran the unfinished line of the New-Orleans and Opelousas Railroad, with a slight wooden plank bridge thrown over the bayou. This was the termination of the line of fortifications. On the same side, at the right end, was a small redoubt, with the famous thirty-two pounder (columbiad) still in position. In their haste the enemy had left without spiking it. Two dismantled caissons lay near it. The ground around the gun was literally piled with shot, shell, grape, canister, cartridges, and even powder. In addition to this, both the boxes in the caissons were filled with ammunition. What appeared to interest lookers — on more than any thing else around here, was a pile of broken — up bars of iron, grates, bolts, etc., in pieces of from one to two inches in length and thickness, which the rebels used in lieu of grape and canister, though I noticed several. cases of the former inclosed in iron rings, the balls about one and a half inches through. Near the woods, in a ditch, I saw one of the famous twelve-pound brass field-pieces of Valverde's battery. One of our shells struck and dismounted it. Another piece was said to be in the woods dismounted also. I did not see it. The works were shot away and broken in many places. When I arrived all the dead had been buried. Upward of forty horses, however, lay around dead. On the opposite side of the river there was about half that number. The Beasland plantation extends on both sides of the Teche, covering an area of from two thousand five hundred to three thousand acres. Between seven and eight hundred hogsheads of sugar were raised yearly on this plantation before the war broke out. Nearly two hundred negroes were employed. Thomas Beasland, the owner of this large plantation, is now a quartermaster in a Mississippi regiment. It is said that he was compelled to enter the army against his wishes. He has only been three or four months in it. Mr. Beasland, a few years ago, married the daughter of John Brownson, Esq., of Brooklyn, (a millionaire.) The former is now thirty-two years of age. Mrs. Beasland is about twenty-six. They have two small children. A little further along the road, to the right, were rifle-pits, and beyond them a fort of considerable size, with a star front. There were no signs of its having been recently in use. In this neighborhood were the destroyed buildings of a large plantation. The mansion was burned to the ground, the lawn and shrubbery were covered with rubbish and broken statues. In the garden (which was now a ruin) was a silent fountain, a dilapidated summer-house, and more broken statues. To the right, across the road, was a sugar-house and saw-mill, both literally broken to pieces by our shot and shell, hundreds of which had struck the buildings, which were in sight and range of nearly all our artillery. To the left were the negro quarters, tenantless. In one building I counted twenty-nine hogsheads and barrels filled with salt beef, beans, sugar, pork, and corn-meal. This belonged to the enemy, and is said to be all the army food they had in that neighborhood. Reveille at four, breakfast at five, march at six, was the order sent round to the different commands on Tuesday night, and at the latter hour on Wednesday morning the advance and pursuit were continued. I have already given an account of the loss of the gunboat Diana, and transports Newsboy, Gossamer, and Era No. 2, near Franklin, on Monday. The next day, about sundown, the Hart (iron-clad) was towed across the Teche, two miles below New-Iberia, scuttled and fired. She was not yet completed. She promised to be one of the most formidable, when finished, that the South have built. She was clad with railroad iron dovetailed together. Her armament was very heavy. A rifled thirty-pounder Dahlgren on her bow and a large brass gun on the stern, with their carriages, are perfect, and will be saved. The Hart, as the rebels intended she should be, proved a very serious obstruction, and when I left (three days after) she still lay as she sunk. So rapid did our army follow up the enemy that they had no time to get their transports at New-Iberia away, and the Blue Hammock, Darby, Louise, Uncle Tommy, and Cricket were all either fired or sunk. All the commissary stores and ammunition with which these transports were loaded were destroyed with them. The Cornie (the hospital boat mentioned in company with the Diana) was captured near New-Iberia the day previous. When our forces saw her stopped by the Diana she was on her way to New-Iberia with her load of wounded. The commander of the Diana warned her not to proceed any further, as General Grover was in the neighborhood; but advised that he should return to Franklin, remove the wounded on shore, and destroy her by fire. She accordingly returned, but was compelled to surrender to our forces before even her wounded were landed. The Cornie, with her crew and nearly sixty wounded prisoners, steamed to the side of the dock, when her wounded were landed. Fortunately, on board her were Capt. Jewett and Lieut. Alice, two of our officers who were captured and refused parole when the Diana was first captured by the enemy. We arrived at New-Iberia on Thursday. Here a large foundry was taken possession of by our forces. A similar one was seized at Franklin two days previous. They were used for manufacturing cannon, munitions of war, gun-carriages, etc. A large saw-mill was also taken possession of at the former place, and two regiments sent to take possession of the celebrated New-Iberia Salt-Works. The latter will prove one of the most
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
Rebel reports and Narratives.
Doc . 91 .- General Sherman 's expedition.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.
An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.