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1863 July 25: Latest War News from Vicksburg

July 29, 2013

Following is the latest news that was available about what was going on at Vicksburg, from the July 25, 1863, issue of The Polk County Press.



CAIRO, July 20.—From D. F. Parker, who left Vicksburg on the 15th, I learn the following :  Yazoo City, which was held by about 800 rebels, was captured by the Federal forces under Gen. Herron [Francis J. Herron] on the 13th; 250 prisoners were captured.

The gunboat De Kalb, which accompanied the expedition, was blown up by torpedoes, and sank in shallow water, and will be raised.  No lives were lost.

The rebels burned three transports living above the city.

Some eight or ten steamers are up the Yazoo.

Gen. Lauman [Jacob G. Lauman] was removed from his command by Sherman [William T. Sherman], it is stated, for disobeying orders, and prematurely attacking Jackson.  He made the attack on the 13th, and was repulsed with a loss of 300 killed and wounded.

Sherman is beseiging [sic] Johnston [Joseph E. Johnston] at Jackson, who is supposed to haye [sic] 30,000 men.

It is said Johnston cannot escape.  A steamer was loading at Vicksburg with rebel sick and wounded for Mobile, by was of New Orleans.

A large fleet of transports, conveyed by gunboats, had gone up Red River under the command of Gen. Ransom [Thomas E. G. Ransom].  When he returns he is to take command at Natchez.

Our forces at Milliken’s Bend and Lake Providence are said to be suffering considerably from sickness.



To Gen. Halleck [Henry W. Halleck] :

Johnson [sic] evacuated Jackson on the night of the 16th.  He is now in full retreat.  Sherman says that most of Johnson’s [sic] army must perish from the heat, lack of water, and general discouragement.  The army of Pemberton [John C. Pemberton] paroled here, to a great extent, deserted, and are scattered through the country.

Gen. Ransom, who was sent on to Natchez, captured a number of prisoners, and 5000 head of Texas cattle.

In Louisiana they captured more prisoners, and a number of teams loaded with ammunition.

Over two million rounds of ammunition were brought back to Natchez and they captured 268,000 rounds of artillery ammunition, also, which was destroyed.

(Signed,)   U. S. GRANT,
Maj. General Com.


ST. LOUIS, July 22d.—A special to the Republican from Memphis, dated the 20th says, by an arrival from below, we have Natchez dates of the 15th, Jackson 15th, and Vicksburg 18th.  Sherman ordered a charge on Johnson’s [sic] forces on Friday, but they had so far escaped.  Capturing was out of the question ;  we only got a few stragglers, a few guns and some ammunition.

A portion of Sherman’s army is now in Jackson, which is his headquarters, while the remainder is on its way back to Vicksburg.

Morris Island, S.C. Battery of 100-pdr. Parrott guns inside Fort Putnam, from the Library of Congress (see footnote 1)

Battery of 100-pounder Parrott Guns, from the Library of Congress (see footnote 1)

Johnson’s [sic] army swam Pear river.

A steamer left Vicksburg on the 6th for Natchez, having on board 1,205, under Ransom.  On arriving he captured five rebel officers.  Crossing the river he captured a battery of 9 12-pound Parrott guns.  He then started back into the country nine miles, captured 247 boxes ammunition, and nine more guns.  The rebels fled in consternation.

On returning to Natchez he found 5,000 head of Texas cattle, and 4000 hogsheads of sugar, all of which he took possession of.  On the 8th two steamers arrived from New Orleans via Port Hudson, bringing up 2,3000 paroled prisoners.

Two steamers left on the 8th for New Orleans, with large loads of cattle, and three more for Vicksburg with live stock.  The steamers Elmira and Louisville, captured up Red River, arrived at Vicksburg on the 17th.  All goes on well.

1.  Battery of 100-pounder Parrott guns inside Fort Putnam on Morris Island, S.C., in 1865, from the Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division.

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