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 from below, the city; therefore, most of the troops had been sent from the city to Tennessee, and Captain Hollins, with the greater part of the river fleet, had gone up to check the descent of the enemy's gunboats. Batteries like those immediately below the city had been constructed where the interior line touched the river above, and armed to resist an attack from that direction. Doubtful as to the direction from which, and the manner in which, an attempt might be made to capture the city, such preparations as circumstances suggested were made against many supposable dangers by the many possible routes of approach. To defend the city from the land, against a bombardment by a powerful fleet in the river before it, had not been contemplated. All the defensive preparations were properly, I think, directed to the prevention of a near approach by the enemy. To have subjected the city to bombardment by a direct or plunging fire, as the surface of the river was then higher than the land, would have been exceptionally destructive. Had the city been filled with soldiers whose families had been sent to a place of safety, instead of being filled with women and children whose natural protectors were generally in the army and far away, the attempt might have been justified to line the levee with all the effective guns and open fire on the fleet, at the expense of whatever property might be destroyed before the enemy should be driven away. The case was the reverse of the hypothesis, and nothing could have been more unjust than to censure the commanding general for withdrawing a force large enough to induce a bombardment, but insufficient to repel it. His answer to the demand for the surrender showed clearly enough the motives by which he was influenced. His refusal enabled him to withdraw the troops and most of the public property, and to use them, with the ordnance and ordnance stores thus saved, in providing for the defense of Vicksburg, but especially it deprived the enemy of any pretext for bombarding the town and sacrificing the lives of the women and children. It appears that General Lovell called for ten thousand volunteers from the citizens, but failed to get them. There were many river steamboats at the landing, and if the volunteers called for were intended to man these boats and board the enemy's fleet before their land forces could arrive, it cannot be regarded as utterly impracticable. The report of General Butler shows that he worked his way through one of the bayous in rear of Fort St. Philip to the Mississippi River above the forts so as to put himself in communication with the fleet at the city, and to furnish Commodore Farragut with ammunition. From this it is to be inferred that the fleet was deficient in ammunition, and the fact would have rendered boarding
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