Tuesday, June 2, 1863

It is blistering hot today with almost no breeze, the third hot day in a row. General Grant has been ill. I hosted Admiral Porter on his visit to my camp. We will mount two of the Navy guns on a hill to be manned by the Navy. We learned that the rebels have burned the boats that were trapped on the Yazoo River.

June 2, 1863

Major General U. S. GRANT:

DEAR GENERAL: Admiral Porter, with some of his junior officers, was here, on horseback, the day before yesterday, the same on which I found you complaining of illness.
I took the party forward to the trenches, the sun glaring hot, and the admiral got tired and overheated, so that, although we proposed coming to see you, he asked me to make his excuses, and say he would come again to make you a special visit. He took the loss of the gunboat, Cincinnati in good part, and expressed himself willing to lose all the boats if he could do any good.

He wanted to put a battery of heavy guns ashore, and I told him there could be no objection, and, accordingly, Captain Selfridge came up last evening, and said he was prepared to land two 8-inch howitzers-to man and work them-if I would haul these guns out and build a parapet. I can put the party and their guns on Steele’s Hill. The hauling will be on a dead-level road till the guns reach the foot of the hill, and the troops can haul them up. I don’t think 8-inch howitzers can do any particular good at that point, but they will clear off that hill, and make the enemy suppose it is to be one of our main points of attack.

Captain Selfridge is just down from Yazoo and Sunflower. In Sunflower they found the following boats burned and destroyed by the enemy: Dewdrop, Argosy, Sharp, and Argo. In the Yazoo, 15 miles below Greenwood, four boats were sunk across the channel, closing the channel. They, too, were burned to the water’s edge, and otherwise destroyed. These were the Scotland, R. J. Lockland, John Walsh, and Golden Era.

S. W. Ferguson was at Greenwood, with a small force, and it was represented that about FIFTEEN boats remained in the Yazoo above the obstruction and below Greenwood, which the gunboats could not reach.

I am, &c.,


About jjneal

Jonathan Neal is an Associate Professor of Entomology at Purdue University and author of the textbook, Living With Insects (2010). This blog is a forum to communicate about the intersection of insects with people and policy. This is a personal blog. The opinions and materials posted here are those of the author and are in no way connected with those of my employer.
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