and reached to the swamps south of the bayou.
All this territory for 50 miles west of the Missississippi is an impassable network of swamps and lakes, but there is a road from Brashear City
and along this road lay the line of advance to Red River
Early in January expeditions had been organized for the purpose of moving up Red River
but it had been found impossible to make a way through the swamps and bayous, and it was thought necessary to abandon the project.
About this time information was received that the Confederates
had captured on Red River
the ram Queen of the West
, and the gunboat De Soto
which had run past the batteries at Vicksburg
and descended the river.
determined at once to patrol the river above Port Hudson
with his vessels and requested Banks
to make a demonstration against the fortification while he ran past the batteries.
having assembled his forces at Baton Rouge
, on March 13 the whole force broke camp and marched toward Port Hudson
, the right and center sections with the divisions of Generals Grover
on the Port Hudson Road
and the left with General Auger
's division on the Clinton Road
The next day Farragut
with his fleet started up the river.
The land forces did not get near enough to the works to use their artillery very effectively, though one section of the 2d Massachusetts was sent within shelling distance of the Confederate
works and fired 50 round of shell into them.
We quote the following from an article in the Boston Journal
written by C. B. Maxwell
The army having halted and camped for the night the sergeants of the first and third detachments came to our quarters and quietly told the drivers and cannoneers not to “turn in.”
“You will be wanted before midnight,” they said.
“We are going out on the road and we may have some fun.”
So about 10 P. M. we were told in whispers to “hitch ”