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, ram Switzerland, and tug Ivy. Admiral Farragut informed Porter that, hearing that General Banks proposed marching on Alexandria, he had sent the Ansonia and Estrella, under Lieutenant-Commander A. P. Cooke, up Red River, to try and communicate with the General, but he feared, as they were light vessels, they might fail. On this, Admiral Porter offered to go up himself with the force he had, and started accordingly on the 4th with the above-named vessels, arriving at Fort De Russy on the 5th. On the way up he met the two gun-boats returning, their commanding officer (Cooke) informing Admiral Porter that his wheel had been disabled by a shell from Fort De Russy; the other vessel was struck, but there was no one hurt. As the vessels were light, Lieutenant-Commander Cooke could do nothing against the enemy. The Admiral directed him to return with him, as he should need his vessels, and shortly after took possession of Fort De Russy. It was a strong work, with three casemated gun
ver bad roads, having to build many bridges across streams; while Banks, who had agreed to be at Alexandria on the 17th, only arrived on the 25th in a fast steamer — yet General Banks undertakes to say that Franklin received orders to march on the 7th, and delayed him that much. He also said the gunboats delayed him at Alexandria, whereas the Louisville, Carondelet, Pittsburgh, Mound City, Osage, and Neosho, all heavy iron-clads, together with the Lexington, Cricket, Gazelle, Covington, Signalt decisive battle with the enemy. The Admiral occupied four days in moving one hundred and four miles on what he calls a rising river, with good water, to the place appointed. General T. Kilby Smith states that the fleet made twenty miles on the 7th,fifty-seven miles on the 8th, eighteen miles on the 9th, and nine miles on the 10th of April--total, one hundred and four miles. The failure of the fleet to move up the river with ordinary expedition, together with the fact that the gun-boats were
left me almost at the mercy of the enemy. The records of the campaign do not at all support the reckless and fiery ardor of this statement. The fleet did not reach the place appointed until two full days after the first decisive battle with the enemy. The Admiral occupied four days in moving one hundred and four miles on what he calls a rising river, with good water, to the place appointed. General T. Kilby Smith states that the fleet made twenty miles on the 7th,fifty-seven miles on the 8th, eighteen miles on the 9th, and nine miles on the 10th of April--total, one hundred and four miles. The failure of the fleet to move up the river with ordinary expedition, together with the fact that the gun-boats were unable to pass Grand Ecore until the 7th, justified the belief that its advance had been prevented by the low stage of water, and governed the Army exclusively in its retrograde movement to Grand Ecore, as it did in every important operation of the campaign. The Admiral's disp
nteers.) the Red River dam.--gun-boats passing the rapids at dawn. (from an original sketch by Rear-Admiral H. Walke.) would have been high enough to enable all the other vessels to pass the upper falls. Unfortunately, on the morning of the 9th instant, the pressure of water became so great that it swept away two of the stone barges, which swung in below the dam on one side. Seeing this unfortunate accident, I jumped on a horse and rode up to where the upper vessels were anchored and orderefour days in moving one hundred and four miles on what he calls a rising river, with good water, to the place appointed. General T. Kilby Smith states that the fleet made twenty miles on the 7th,fifty-seven miles on the 8th, eighteen miles on the 9th, and nine miles on the 10th of April--total, one hundred and four miles. The failure of the fleet to move up the river with ordinary expedition, together with the fact that the gun-boats were unable to pass Grand Ecore until the 7th, justified the
swung around against some rock on the left, and made a fine cushion for the vessels, and prevented them, as it afterwards appeared, from running on certain destruction. The force of the water and the current being too great to construct a continuous dam of six hundred feet across the river in so short a time, Colonel Bailey determined to leave a gap of fifty-five feet in the dam, and build a series of wing-dams on the upper falls. This was accomplished in three days time, and, on the 11th instant, the Mound City, Carondelet and Pittsburg came over the upper falls, a good deal of labor having been expended in hauling them through, the channel being very crooked, scarcely wide enough for them. Next day the Ozark, Louisville, Chillicothe, and two tugs also succeeded in crossing the upper falls. Immediately afterwards, the Mound City, Carondelet, and Pittsburg started in succession to pass the dam, all their hatches battened down, and every precaution taken to prevent accident. The
neral Franklin that he had promised to meet the Admiral in Alexandria on the 17th of March, and as the latter place is 175 miles from the town of Franklin, of course it was impossible to fulfill this promise. Besides, on the 10th of March only 3,000 of the troops which were to form that arm of the expedition were on the ground--the remainder had just arrived from Texas and were at Berwick Bay without transportation, and the cavalry had not arrived from New Orleans. Franklin started on the 13th, and his advance-guard reached Alexandria on the 25th, the rear-guard and pontoon train on the 26th and 27th. Thus Franklin marched at the rate of sixteen miles a day over bad roads, having to build many bridges across streams; while Banks, who had agreed to be at Alexandria on the 17th, only arrived on the 25th in a fast steamer — yet General Banks undertakes to say that Franklin received orders to march on the 7th, and delayed him that much. He also said the gunboats delayed him at Alexan
which the following is an extract: General Banks with 17,000 men and 10,000 of Sherman's will be in Alexandria on the 17th. * * * * Sherman insists upon my moving upon Shreveport to co-operate with the above-mentioned forces with all my effectivneral Banks, dated March 6. He expects to effect a junction with Sherman's forces (Smith's Division) on Red River, on the 17th. He desires that positive orders be sent to Steele to move in conjunction with them for Red River, with all his available a day over bad roads, having to build many bridges across streams; while Banks, who had agreed to be at Alexandria on the 17th, only arrived on the 25th in a fast steamer — yet General Banks undertakes to say that Franklin received orders to march o at Franklin should move for the Red River on the 7th of March, to meet the forces of General Sherman at Alexandria on the 17th. But, for causes stated by General Franklin, their march was delayed until the 13th, at which time the advance, under Gen
n the 17th. But, for causes stated by General Franklin, their march was delayed until the 13th, at which time the advance, under General A. L Lee, left Franklin, the whole column following soon after and arriving at Alexandria, the cavalry on the 19th, and the infantry on the 25th. On the 13th of March, 1864, one division of the 16th corps, under Brigadier-General Mower, and one division of the 17th corps, under Brigadier-General T. Kilby Smith--the whole under command of Brigadier-General Ation on the 16th of the same month. General Lee, of my command, arrived at Alexandria on the morning of the 19th. The enemy, in the meantime, continued his retreat in the direction of Shreveport. Officers of my staff were at Alexandria on the 19th, and I made my headquarters there on the 24th, the forces under General Franklin arriving on the 25th and 26th of March; but as the stage of the water in Red River was too low to admit the passage of the gun-boats or transports over the Falls, the
he steamers below to those above the Falls. This was a departure from the plan of the campaign, which did not contemplate a post or depot at any point on Red River, and involved the necessity of leaving a division at Alexandria for the purpose of protecting the depot, transports and supplies. Brigadier-General C. Grover was placed in command of the post, and his division left for its defence. This reduced the force of the advancing column about 3,000 men. While at Alexandria, on the 21st instant, a movement was organized against the enemy posted at Henderson's Hill, 25 miles in advance. The expedition consisted of three brigades of General A. J. Smith's command, and a brigade of cavalry of the 19th corps, under command of Colonel Lucas, of the 16th Indiana volunteers--the whole under the command of Brigadier-General Mower, of the 16th corps. The enemy was surprised, losing 250 prisoners, 200 horses and four guns, with their caissons. Colonel H. B. Sargent of my staff was sever
captured. Our loss was slight. The troops and transports under General A. J. Smith, and the marine brigade under General Ellet, with the gunboats, moved to Alexandria, which was occupied without opposition on the 16th of the same month. General Lee, of my command, arrived at Alexandria on the morning of the 19th. The enemy, in the meantime, continued his retreat in the direction of Shreveport. Officers of my staff were at Alexandria on the 19th, and I made my headquarters there on the 24th, the forces under General Franklin arriving on the 25th and 26th of March; but as the stage of the water in Red River was too low to admit the passage of the gun-boats or transports over the Falls, the troops encamped near Alexandria, General Smith and his command moving forward 21 miles to Bayou Rapides, above Alexandria. There was but six feet of water in the channel, while seven and a-half were necessary for the second class and ten feet for the first-class gunboats. The river is narrow,
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