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[367] river below, for the passage of the enemy's boats beyond the reach of the guns of the fort.

Should the locality admit of such a canal, beyond the range of said guns, another enclosed battery, of four or five guns, will have to be constructed below Vicksburg, to command the ground over which said canal might be made.

The plans and profiles of these works must be left to your own judgment, and to the nature of the ground on which they are to be located. Their armament will consist of ten or twelve 8-inch and 10-inch guns, fifteen 42pound-ers, three 24-pounders, and several mortars, with a dozen field rifled guns, and half a dozen 24-pounder howitzers; those being all the guns we can spare at present for the defence of the river at that point.

The total garrison will consist of about three thousand men. There should be ample space in those works for magazines-traverses in every direction, field bomb-proofs, and a few storehouses and cisterns.

Acting Captains John M. Reid and Pattison, also Acting Lieutenant John H. Reid, have been ordered to report to you for the construction of these works. The two Reids (father and son) I am well acquainted with; they were for years employed by me in the construction of my forts in Louisiana. They are very reliable, practical men, and will be of much assistance to you; the other gentleman I am not personally acquainted with. Colonel Aubrey, military commander of Vicksburg, has been ordered to afford you all the assistance in his power, in the collection of men and materials for the construction of said works. About one thousand negroes have been ordered to report to you with their tools, etc., immediately; but, should you not be able to procure them otherwise, you will impress them at once. You must put forth all your energy to complete those works as soon as practicable, and report their progress every week.

Respectfully, your obedient servant,

Nor was General Beauregard unmindful of the importance of strengthening and increasing the armament of Randolph, as appears by his letter to Commodore Pinckney, under date of April 24th, 1862.1

On the 27th Captain Harris answered that no batteries could be placed on the Mississippi banks to command the mouth of the Yazoo River, which is twelve miles above Vicksburg. He said it was proposed to pass into the Yazoo much valuable property, and obstruct the passage of the enemy's boats by booms, rafts, piling, and batteries, at a point eighteen miles above its mouth, and twelve miles from Vicksburg, where the highlands reach that stream; and he added, ‘Shall I order this work? I am now constructing ’

1 See letter in Appendix.

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