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Grant and Sherman had no thought of abandoning Vicksburg because of this failure. But a month of unfortunate military dissension over rank in the command of Sherman's Army resulted in General John A. McClernand, armed with authority from Washington, coming down from Illinois and superseding Sherman. On January 11, 1864, he captured Arkansas post, a stronghold on the Arkansas River. But Grant, having authority to supersede McClernand in the General proceedings against Vicksburg, did so, on January 30th, and arguments on military precedence were forgotten.

Grant was determined to lead his Army of the Tennessee below Vicksburg and approach the city from the south, without breaking with his base of supplies up the River. Two projects, both of which were destined to fail, were under way during the winter and spring months of 1863. one of these was to open a way for the River craft through Lake Providence, west of the Mississippi, through various bayous and rivers into the Red River, a detour of four hundred miles.

another plan was to cut a channel through the peninsula of the great bend of the Mississippi, opposite Vicksburg. For six weeks, thousands of men worked like marmots digging this ditch; but, meantime, the River was rising and, on March 8th, it broke over the embankment and the men had to run for their lives. Many horses were drowned and a great number of implements submerged. The “father of Waters” had put a decisive veto on the project and it had to be given up. Still another plan that failed was to cut through the Yazoo Pass and approach from the north by way of the Coldwater, the Tallahatchie, and the Yazoo rivers.

failure with Grant only increased his grim determination. He would take Vicksburg. His next plan was destined to bring success. It was to transfer his Army by land down the west bank of the Mississippi to a point below the city and approach it from the south and west. This necessitated the running of the batteries by Porter's fleet — an extremely

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