prompt capture of Butte
The high water, flooding the land and swelling the bayous, rendered this expedition impossible.
It was reserved for the fleet, on April 20th, in conjunction with companies of infantry, to take the Butte.
Again the fleet had, under a strong leader, shown the army how to take a fortified work.
For both fleet and army, the capture of the Butte was an inviting object.
had ordered Grover
, commanding at Baton Rouge
and already waiting for the order, to proceed by water to Donaldsonville
and thence to Thibodeaux
Behind an open Atchafalaya
, he could see the Red river
country free to his troops.
These two expeditions, therefore, were an advance in force of a powerful army.
was on the Teche
awaiting him with 4,000 men all told.
For the Confederate
leader, the larger the enemy's column, the more he enjoyed the shock of battle.
had been building up rainbows during March, 1863.
Every expedition sent out by him was, directly or indirectly, connected with the expedition up Red river
had previously been despatched to move up the Teche
, and having heard of the arrival of the Confederate vessels Queen of the West
-à--la-Rose, he naturally wanted some gunboats for himself.
Without a superior force of these at Berwick bay
he could not longer hold his position on the Atchafalaya
On April 8th, Banks
left New Orleans on a new expedition.
He reached Brashear City
, where Weitzel
's brigade was stationed, and immediately ordered Weitzel
to cross the bay, followed closely by Emory
, from Bayou Boeuf
, reached him about 1 p. m. On April 10th, Banks
' general plan was to move upon Bayou Teche
, with a probable attack upon our force at Pattersonville
After this he purposed proceeding to New Iberia to destroy the salt works near that town.
was crossing on the 9th, 10th and 11th.
The transportation of his large army was necessarily slow.