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Doc. 131.-Red River expedition.

Reports of Admiral Porter.

Mississippi Squadron, flag-ship Black Hawk, off Red River, March 2, 1864.
sir: I came down here anticipating a move on the part of the army up toward Shreveport; but as the river is lower than it has been known to be for years, I much fear that the combined movement cannot come off without interfering with plans formed by General Grant.

General Sherman has gone to New-Orleans to make arrangements with General Banks, and I am expecting his return every day. In the mean time the gunboats are up the Atchafalaya and Black Rivers, destroying bridges and stores, and endeavoring to destroy eight thousand cattle collected at Sicily Island.

The Mississippi River is very quiet, and the rebels retreated into the interior on hearing of the advance of the gunboats.

I am, sir,

Very respectfully,

Your obedient servant,

David D. Porter, Rear-Admiral. Hon. Gideon Welles, Secretary of the Navy,. Washington, D. C.

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