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[334] was sunk, but enough escaped to give the enemy abundant supplies below Vicksburg and boats enough for ferriage uses. On April 20th the movement of the enemy commenced through the country on the west side of the river to their selected point of crossing below Grand Gulf.

On the 29th the enemy's gunboats came down and took their stations in front of our batteries and rifle-pits at Grand Gulf. A furious cannonade was continued for many hours, and the fleet withdrew, having one gunboat disabled, and otherwise receiving and inflicting but little damage. Among the casualties on our side was that of Colonel William Wade, the chief of artillery, an officer of great merit, alike respected and beloved, whose death was universally regretted.

In a short time the fleet reappeared from behind a point which had concealed them from view. The gunboats now had transports lashed to their farther side, and, protected by their iron shields, ran by our batteries at full speed, losing but one transport on the way.

On the evening of April 29th the enemy commenced ferrying over troops from the Louisiana to the Mississippi shore to a landing just below the mouth of Bayou Pierre. General Green with his brigade moved thither, and when the enemy on the night of the 30th commenced his advance, General Green attacked him with such impressive vigor as to render their march both cautious and slow. As additional forces came up, Green retired, skirmishing. In the meantime Generals Tracy and Baldwin, with their brigades, had by forced marches joined General Green, and about daylight a more serious conflict occurred, lasting some two hours and a half, during which General Tracy, a distinguished citizen of Alabama, of whom patriotism made a soldier, fell while gallantly leading his brigade in the unequal combat in which it was engaged. Step by step, disputing the ground, Green retired to the range of hills three miles southwest of Port Gibson, where General Bowen joined him and arranged a new line of battle. The enemy's forces were steadily augmented by the arrival of reenforcements from the rear. Our troops continued most valiantly to resist until, between nine and ten o'clock, outflanked both on our right and left, their condition seemed almost hopeless, when, by a movement to which desperation gave a power quite disproportionate to the numbers, the right wing of the enemy was driven back, and our forces made good their retreat across the bridge over Bayou Pierre. General Cockerell, commanding our left wing, led this forlorn hope in person, and to the fortune which favors the brave must be attributed the few casualties which occurred in a service so hazardous. General Bowen promptly entrenched his camp on the east side of Bayou

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