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[129] Beard's Point, on Black river, at 9:30 p. m. The objective point on the river was evidently Harrisonburg— the Confederate headquarters under Brig.-Gen. Camille J. Polignac.1 The territory is one of numerous watercourses, treacherous rivers interspersed with more treacherous bayous. Recent rains had made the roads, already bad, impassable for the movement of troops. Polignac, with a small force of infantry, under Colonel Taylor and Lieutenant-Colonel Stone, cavalry under Captain Randle, and Faries' battery, had so skillfully handled his men that the expedition was made practically a useless exhibition of force. He was gallantly assisted by Capt. T. A. Faries, of the Pelican (Louisiana) battery, against the flotilla, whose main damage had been done by firing not less than 1,000 rounds out of 24 and 32-pounders, and by shelling, out of 12-pounder Parrott rifles, the banks between Trinity and Harrisonburg, as well as the two towns. It was a brief fight, at short distance, between Faries' battery of light guns and the heavier metal of protected boats. This amphibious duel between a battery on shore and an armed flotilla in the river, was still a novelty in warfare. Disappointed at the result of ten days shelling, the flotilla withdrew, on the 4th, up the Ouachita river. Casualties, 3 killed and 13 wounded, 3 of them mortally. The enemy were supposed to have buried 15 on the banks of the Ouachita.

On the 17th, Banks heard of the capture of Fort De Russy on the 14th, by A. J. Smith's forces. He was also cheered by the news of the capture of Alexandria on the 15th, by Admiral Porter's fleet; and on the 19th, by the report that General Franklin was coming from the Teche with 18,000 men. From General Steele, at Camden, Arkansas, he heard that he was on the march with 12,000

1 Brigadier-General Polignac (Prince Camille de Polignac) was a gallant young Frenchman, as devoted to the cause of the Confederacy as he had been, nay, as he still is, to the Bourbon Lilies Polignac had lately joined Taylor's army and had been put in command of a brigade of Texas infantry.

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T. A. Faries (3)
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