1863 March 28: Yazoo Pass Expedition and Other News
The following news is from The Polk County Press of March 28, 1863. Half way down is a paragraph on General Quinby and the Yazoo Pass Expedition, which was a joint operation of General Ulysses S. Grant’s Army of the Tennessee and Admiral David D. Porter’s Mississippi River Squadron. The expedition was an effort to bypass the Confederate defenses on the bluffs near Vicksburg by using the backwaters of the Mississippi as a route from the Mississippi River to the Yazoo River. The operation required a deep penetration into enemy territory. The expedition began on February 3 and was over by April 12, 1863.
LATE WAR NEWS.
Gen. Sigel [Franz Sigel] has been induced to withdraw his resignation, and will probably be assigned his old command.
The Navy Department has received no official intelligence of the victory on the Yazoo. Private letters received at St. Louis discredit our success.
The private Florida, has made here appearance again, so that her “supposed wreck” must have been some other vessel.
Mr. Dayton informs the State Department that he read Mr. Seward’s [William H. Seward] dispatch to the French Minister, who listened but made no reply.
Gen. Hooker [Joseph Hooker] reports the health of the army as excellent.
We have an important order from Gen. Hunter [David Hunter], preparatory to a forward movement in South Carolina. The attack on Charleston has probably already begun. Officers and privates are notified in his order that they will be promoted for gallant conduct in battle.
Gen. Hunter has also issued another order, providing for the drafting of all able-bodied negroes in his department, for garrison duty.
Rosecrans [William S. Rosecrans] telegraphs to Washington that he has received a report that the rebels have evacuated Vicksburg. Nothing is known officially. It is rumored that the rebels have gone to Chattanooga, and will attack Rosecrans. It is also rumored that they have retired to Jackson, Miss., which is to be the next strategetic [sic] point.
A special dispatch from Memphis dated the 11th, says that General Quimby’s [sic] division, which returned from Young’s Point on account of high water, stooped at Yazoo Pass, probably to reinforce that expedition, which, it is reported, has captured Yazoo City, and the rebel fleet of transports that had rendezvoused there for a long time.
Col. Corrington [sic: Henry B. Carrington] sent a squad of men into a county in Illinois to arrest deserters, and after the soldiers had secured the deserters, they were in turn arrested by a Copperhead Judge for kidnapping, and required to give bail. Col. Carrington then sent a forced and arrested the Judge under the provisions of the conscription law which forbids the encouragement of desertion.
The rumored capture of Fort Donelson, that we have favored with for the last two days, is said to be “merely an invention of the enemy.”
Disabled soldiers are to have the preference over all others applicants for Provost Marshalships under the conscription law. This is as it should be.
Wheat has declined owing to our reported success on the Yazoo, sellers in Milwaukee being unable to obtain $1.20 for No. 1.
1. Isaac Ferdinand Quinby (1821-1891) was a graduate of West Point and served in the Mexican War. He resigned his commission in 1852 and became a professor of mathematics and philosophy. When the War started, he was appointed colonel of the 13th New York Infantry. In March 1862 he was promoted to brigadier general and was placed in command of the District of Mississippi where forces under his command captured Fort Pillow on May 22. In March 1863 his division was sent out as reinforcements for the Yazoo Pass Expedition.