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[409] however, was satisfactorily explained to me in a few words, the mistake, no doubt, having been entirely my own. Again addressing General Grant, I said: “In your letter this morning you state that you have no other terms than an unconditional surrender.” He answered promptly, “I have no other.” To this I rejoined: “Then, sir, it is unnecessary that you and I should hold any further conversation; we will go to fighting again at once;” and I added, “I can assure you, sir, you will bury many more of your men before you will enter Vicksburg.” General Grant did not, as Badeau represents, reply, “Very well,” nor did he “turn off.” He did not change his position, nor did he utter a word. The movement to withdraw, so far as any movement was made, was on my part and was accompanied by the remark that if he (General Grant) supposed I was suffering for provisions he was mistaken, that I had enough to last me for an indeffinite period and that Port Hudson was better supplied than Vicksburg. General Bowen made no suggestion whatever in regard to a consultation between any parties during this interview, as he is represented to have done by Badeau. But General Grant did at this time propose that he and I should step aside, and on my assenting, he added that if I had no objection he would take with him Generals McPherson and A. J. Smith. I replied, certainly, and that General Bowen and Colonel Montgomery would accompany me. General Grant then suggested that these gentlemen withdraw and see whether on consultation they could not arrive at some satisfactory arrangement. It will be readily understood that I offered no objection to this course, as it was in fact a withdrawal by General Grant from the position he had so unqualifiedly assumed, to-wit, unconditional surrender — and it really submitted as I had desired it should, the discussion of the question of terms to a commission, although that commission was now necessarily an impromptu one.

Pending the interchange of views by the officers named, General Grant and I remained apart from them, conversing only upon topics that had no relation to the important subject that brought us together. The terms which this commission agreed to propose were in the main those that were afterward proffered by General Grant and eventually accepted by me. During this discussion I stated to him that as he declined to appoint commissioners when invited to do so by me, it was now his part to propose the terms. He agreed to this and said I should hear from him by 10 P. M. When about to part I notified General Grant that I held myself in no manner pledged to any agreement, but should consult my division and brigade commanders. He replied that


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