On November 1st he notified General Mouton
that one was within his obstructions, with the others steaming past—a serious blow, which Mouton
met by falling back two miles above the obstructions, at Mrs. Meade
's. New intrenchments were begun, with a view to establishing heavy guns.
The same day four gunboats were seen cautiously moving up the bayou.
He had already ordered Captain Fuller
with the Cotton
to delay them as long as possible.
Intrenchments were to be strengthened; and the Cotton
was to keep the gunboats busy while Mouton
was using mattock and spade.
The Cotton showed no fear of the enemy.
Several shots were exchanged between steamer and gunboats, without injury to either.
On the night of November 2d it became a small game of hide and seek.
The gunboats had dropped back to the bay. With them out of the way the Cotton
, capable of being of great service to Mouton
, was lost for a time, being backed up the Teche
a little above the intrenchments.
Service was soon demanded, however, of the Cotton
, even in the Teche
It was to be ready to engage the gunboats should they come up again.
On November 3d the enemy moved up, as expected.
At 2 p. m. his whole force engaged the Cotton
Behind the Cotton
was an uncovered land battery of rifled pieces, stationed there for co-operation and support.
The fight of artillery lasted from 2 p. m. to 3:30 p. m. The gunboats were made strong by their numbers.
Coming up to close range, the enemy's fire grew so heavy that both the Cotton
and the battery were compelled to retire.
Thus freed from all danger of reprisal, the gunboats moved boldly up to the very obstructions.
Their shells, skillfully guided, compelled the Confederates
to get out of range.
The squadron continued the shelling at intervals for three days, until Wednesday, November 5th, on which day victory clearly remained with the Cotton
The enemy, wearied with the long contest and conscious