I went into Vicksburg today (17 miles) taking Ellen & the children to see the Fortifications of the Place and all the points of interest, including Chickasaw. They gathered pockets full of bullets and fragments of iron shot & shells, but soon so overloaded themselves that like children they disgorged and got back empty pocketed.
All are well satisfied with our Camp on Big Black. I have two large Hospital tents for Ellen & myself and two common wall tents for the children. You would be surprised to see how well they get along. All are well and really have improved in health down here. Minnie though only in her 13th year has nearly her growth and is really a beautiful woman. It makes me feel old to See her and the others growing so fast, but as long as I like I can maintain them in proper state.
General Grant is in New Orleans and not expected back for several days. I met with General McPherson and we discussed the situation around Vicksburg. So many are on leave that there is little we can do but keep command of our current position and drill the men for the future.