It is very hard to get anything reliable from Vicksburg
, except what comes to the War Department.
The accounts received through other sources are of that reckless, slashing, blood and thunder style that creates in the public mind great doubt as to their reliability.
The Mobile Tribune
, of the 2d, has some in formation from the enemy's camp, brought by Mr. Saunders
, of Selma, Ala.
He has been inside the Yankee
lines ever since Grant
invested the place, and was allowed to leave by Gen. Grant
, in order to bring away Mrs. Hundley
, wife of Col. D. R. Hundley
, of the 31st Alabama, who was wounded and taken prisoner at Port Gibson
He reports that in the big fight on Friday of week before last, the Yankees
confess that they lost twenty thousand men.
On Thursday of the same week we sunk two of the enemy's gunboats, which shell the town every day, having set fire to some houses, and already killed a few women and children, but doing very little other damage.
Thirty one of Vaughn
's East Tennessean having deserted and taken the oath, state, that so far our losses in the city amount to only a thousand. Mr. Saunders
reports that the Yankees
lose from fifty to four hundred every day, our sharpshooters killing them off whenever they show themselves near their guns, which they are obliged to handle at night.
One of our sharpshooters has already immortalized himself in the Yankee
He tells them he is a one eyed man, and as he shoots a Belgian rifle, whenever the peculiar whistle of that weapon is heard the Yankees
call out, "Look out, boys, there's old one eye!"
They say he can kill at one thousand yards, and never misses.
One day two Yankee Captains were looking from behind a cotton bale, and old One Eye killed them both at one shot.
also saw one other Captain
with an amputated leg, which he owed to the same unknown man. Col. Hundley
knows the man, says his name is Elliott
, and that he belongs to the 30th Alabama.
He is known in Alabama
as the best marksman in the State
speaks very disparagingly of Johnston
, and says he will whip him certainly if he comes to attack him where he is. He has received heavy reinforcements since the fall of Snyder
Among the killed of the Yankees
since they have invested Vicksburg
, are Maj. Gen. Kerr, Brig.Gens. Burbridge
, and one other, name forgotten.
The two gunboats sunk were the Natchez
and the Nightingale
says he will starve Vicksburg
out in ten days, but this is known to be an idle boast.
states that the stench of the dead Yankees
offended citizens six miles from the battle-field.
sent a flag of truce to Grant
and demanded that he remove his wounded and bury his dead, which demand was complied with.
The Federals, when they approached Vicksburg
, were perfectly sanguine of an immediate capture of our stronghold, and invited the ladies into Vicksburg
to see their sweethearts, as the rebels were all to be sent North
demanded a surrender of the city, and gave Pemberton
three days to consider the proposition.
The rebel General replied that he didn't want three minutes to consider the question, but invited Grant
to open upon him as soon as he pleased.
After the terrible slaughter on Friday, Gen. Grant
issued an order for new ladders to be made and the assault to be renewed on Saturday, at 2 o'clock, but the men refused to be led again to the "slaughter pen." The 20th Ohio sent up a petition to Gen. McClernand
, and positively refused to participate again in the murderous work.
heard frequent conversations between the Federals
and Col. Womack
, chief of Grant
's staff, expressed the opinion that Vicksburg
would not be taken for six months, if ever.
They imagine, now, that our force in Vicksburg
is from 75,000 to 100,000 men.
The entire Federal loss around the entrenchment at Vicksburg
is estimated by them at from 35,000 to 40,000. General Grant
sent in to Pemberton
to know why he fired railroad spikes and poisoned balls at them?
The only answer Gen
. P made to this cession was that the whole story was a d — d lie. The Federals are seizing upon all sorts of pretexts to account for their tremendous Losses.
A correspondent of the Mobile Register
writing from Jackson, Miss.
, on the 29th, gives the following view of the position of affairs around the beleaguered city:
The principal fighting at Vicksburg
has lulled, and the enemy has fallen back and commenced fortifying among the bills in parallel lines with those of Pemberton
His assaults on the Vicksburg
works have been terribly disastrous.
More of the enemy have been slaughtered before the Vicksburg
trenches than in any other battle of the war, being from 20,000 to 30,000.
This is a great number of men to be put hors du combat
in a single battle; for in this estimate I do not mean to include the enemy's losses at Grand Gulf
, Baker's Creek
, or Big Black; nor do I make the statement without the most careful inquiry.
Suffice it that my information is correct.
I telegraphed you that Vicksburg
was closely besieged.
At the time I did so the enemy had command (and yet have) of the Mississippi river
in his front, above and below the city, of the Yazoo river
to Snyder's Bluff, where his right wing rested; of the Big Black river
to the Southern Railroad bridge, where his left wing rested; his northern base of operations at Snyder's Gulf. The Big Black
and Yazoo rivers
flow from Northern Mississippi
in a south westerly direction; the Yazoo
discharges into the Mississippi
a few miles above Vicksburg
, and the Big Black at Grand Gulf
, some eighty miles below.
The enemy had massed his army--100,000 men — on a line from the bridge to the bluff, a distance of some twenty miles, being from river to river, while his gunboats and pickets held the rivers.
I have furthermore stated that reasonable fears were entertained for the safety of Vicksburg
; and although the face of affairs has in a great measure changed, I see no good reason for an abandonment of those fears.
True, the enemy have assaulted the works, and have encountered an extraordinary amount of slaughter; so great as to deter them for a while, at least, from a similar experiment; but they are still in front of our entrenchments, with an army believed to number 70,000 effective men. They have fallen back and commenced a series of fortifications parallel with those in their front, and communication with Vicksburg
yet remains cut off, and can only be had by such means as it would be impolitic for me to mention.
A want of water of necessity compels the enemy to fall back on the Big Black, which he has done, and he can only supply himself by hauling.
Here his lines assume a convex form, having wheeled his left round on the Mississippi river
, and, unless well protected by salients, his flanks are of necessity exposed.--The same want of water prevails from here to the Big Black.
In dry weather the creeks dry up, there are few springs, and I have never yet seen a well — all are cisterns, which do not furnish but a bare supply for the families who sunk them.
Now, until the way shall be cleared by driving off the enemy, it is impossible either to throw supplies or reinforcements into Vicksburg
The enemy is evidently sick of the fight, and prefers to adopt the slow method of besieging and starving out the garrison.
Sickness will exist in his camps to an alarming extent, but we must remember that the garrison of Vicksburg
will suffer also.
I hope that, in making these statements I will not be considered an alarmist.
I am, however, sanguine of ultimate success, and hope for the best, but the truth might as well be told first as last.--Unless Vicksburg
is relieved it must ultimately fall.
The movements of Gen. Johnston
and others it is improper in me to mention, but from them I draw the most cheering inferences.
The garrison of Vicksburg
is better supplied than I at first supposed; for the planters, on the appearance of the enemy, drove most all of their hogs, sheep and cattle into the city, and also sent in 400 wagon loads of corn, which is an invaluable help at this time.
The movements of Grant
show his consciousness in the strength of numbers, and his quick movements misled those high in authority, while it is believed he has received orders to take Vicksburg
if he has to sacrifice his entire army.
is reported to have crossed with his main army at Bayon Sara, and is said to be moving up to Grand Gulf
If so, he is expected to operate against Warrenton
, and on the New Orleans
and his forces are considered of but little consequence.
and Gen. Johnston
have issued a joint appeal to the people of Mississippi
to volunteer, as ninety days troops, as cavalry or infantry.
There is no time for procrastination; they have but one choice — fight, or give up to the Yankee
No half-way measures will do; it is "neck or nothing." "I don't think the Yankees
will ever come here," is a foolish remark or opinion from anybody west of the Bigbee river