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The capture of Port Hudson. by Richard B. Irwin, Lieutenant-Colonel, Assistant Adjutant-General, U. S. V. General Banks arrived in New Orleans on the 14th of December, 1862, with the advance of a fleet of transports from New York and Hampton Roads, bringing reenforcements for the Department of the Gulf. These reenforcements finally included 39 regiments of infantry (of which 22 were 9-months' men), six batteries of artillery, and one battalion of cavalry. On the 15th he took command of the department, Butler then formally taking leave of the troops. His orders were to move up the Mississippi, in order to open the river, in cooperation with McClernand's column from Cairo. Banks was to take command of the combined forces as soon as they should meet. On the 16th General Grover, with 12 regiments and a battery, without disembarking at New Orleans, accompanied by two batteries and two troops of cavalry from the old force, and convoyed by a detachment of Farragut's fleet under