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he same river. Next day a naval force took possession of the place without resistance. On the same day Brigadier-General Lawler, having reported to me for duty under Major-General Grant's order, was assigned to the command of the Second brigade of General Carr's division. March from Port Gibson to Champion Hill. On the third, agreeably to your instructions, my corps, save Lawler's brigade, which was left behind temporarily to garrison Port Gibson, marched on the Raymond road to Willow Springs; on the sixth to Rocky Spring; on the eighth to Little Sand; and on the <*>inth to Big Sand. General Osterhaus led the advance from Little to Big Sand, and upon arriving at the latter creek, immediately threw a detachment of infantry, preceded by the Second Illinois cavalry, over it, toward Hall's Ferry, on Big Black. Finding a detachment of the enemy in front of the ferry, a company of cavalry, under Lieutenant Stickel, dashed forward and dispersed it before it had time to form, kil
lies, and Sherman's corps, which had come forward in the mean time, demonstrations were made, successfully I believe, to induce the enemy to think that route and the one by Hall's Ferry above, were objects of much solicitude to me. Reconnoissances were made to the west side of the Big Black to within six miles of Warrenton. On the seventh of May an advance was ordered, McPherson's corps keeping the road nearest Black River to Rocky Springs, McClernand's corps keeping the ridge road from Willow Springs, and Sher. man following with his corps divided on the two roads. All the ferries were closely guarded until our troops were well advanced. It was my intention here to hug the Black River as closely as possible with McClernand's and Sherman's corps, and get them to the railroad, at some place between Edward's Station and Bolton. McPherson was to move by way of Utica to Raymond, and from thence into Jackson, destroying the railroad, telegraph, public stores, etc., and push west to rej