Thurs. March 10: Still at the landing this morning and it is misting rain a little. Cleared off in the afternoon and quite pleasant. We are considerable crowded on board. Left the landing 2 miles below Vicksburg just at dark and ran all night. Nothing occurred to hinder us and we made very good time. Distance from Vicksburg to Natchez is 110 miles by river.
Fri. March 11: Passed Natchez this morning just after daylight. Quite cold last night and is cool this morning. Passed Ft. Adams and reached the mouth of Red river about 5 oclock. Landed on the Louisiana shore and took all our horses ashore and left them till morning. There is a large plantation here (Carr's); the house was burnt down this evening. We found lots of corn here. The gun boats had a fight up Red river today.
Sat. March 12: Beautiful morning. Took our horses aboard this morning. Shoved out about noon and started up the Red river, as I thought, but it was only the old channel of the Mississippi river. Saw an alligator today. Run slow and tied up about 4 oclock at Simsport Ferry on the Apaclalaya river, or bayou. There was a Rebel camp near here, the Rebs left their supper cooking. There are 19 transports here and 21 gun boats.
Sun. March 13: Beautiful weather. An infantry force and the 3rd Indiana Battalion was sent out this morning on a reconnoitering expedition, went out about 4 miles found no enemy and returned in the evening. Received orders to debark immediately. Were about an hour unloading our guns and were ready to start by dark. Left at nine oclock, passed the Rebel fort, and went into camp about midnight on the bayou De George, or Yellow bayou, traveled 8 miles.
Mon. March 14: Left camp at daylight and marched along the levee of Yellow bayou. Close cannonading in front about 10 oclock. Crossed the bayou and a very nice prairie and passed Mansura, ??Cocouville, and some nice country. Passed Markville and soon heard cannonading from Ft. Dernsy. Formed a line of battle, the infantry moved steadily forward, the firing was now pretty brisk. Our battery was called on to relieve the 3rd. Our gun stuck in mud right in range. The infantry made a charge and took the fort. Camped one mile south of fort.
Tues. March 15: Left camp at 9 oclock and went down to the landing at about 10 oclock, found all the transports there but ours. Waited till 9 oclock when the old boat got down and got loaded by midnight and moved out up the river. I went round and took a good look at the forts which are the strongest I ever saw. Our boats were bothered by bars and an obstruction of skike works in coming up here. We had 5 killed and 27 wounded in taking the fort. Pretty much all the citizens here are French. 285 prisoners were taken.
Wed. March 16: Quite chilly morning, are running up the Red river. Reached Alexandria at 4 oclock, very crooked river, narrow and deep. The infantry all went ashore, we took off all our horses and put them in a large stable. The Rebs evacuated at our approach leaving a lot of corn and other things behind. Lt Col. Cravens and I took a walk up town, quite nice place. There are no fortifications here of any importance at all. Town rather new.
Thurs. March 17: Beautiful day. Alexandria is a nice town and is the seat of Justice of Rapides Parish. The town is quite level. I walked up through town again today. Three pieces of artillery were found near here today and brought in. There is a large number of hogsheads of good sugar here, considerable cotton was found here and is being loaded on the marine and gunboats. The Rebs had a half dozen more transports here, they burnt their ferry boat.
Fri. March 18: Very pleasant today. Still laying up yet waiting for the river to rise, or something else, I don't know what. The river is rising slowly. Foraging parties are sent out every day, bringing in cattle, hogs, sheep and many other things of value. Gen. Smith and 5 boats came up this evening. They blowed up Ft. DeRusy before they left. Beautiful level country here. Pineville, where the military Academy was, is 2 miles from here.
Sat. March 19: Rather warm and has the appearance of rain today. Some of Bank's Cavalry advanced come in this morning. I took a ride through town today. Nothing of interest has transpired today other than the LAUREL HILL has arrived from New Orleans this evening bringing the most of Gen. Bank's staff officers, Gen. Leen, Chief of Cavalry, Gen. Arnold, Chief of Artillery, Gen Stone, Chief of Staff. Rained this evening, cavalry division arrived.
Sun. March 20: Rained this morning. I took a ride up town this morning and saw Bank's 1st Division of cavalry coming in. It has remained cloudy all day but has not rained but little. Feel unwell today. A mail was sent out today. We are expecting Bank's forces to arrive now every day. A brigade of the 16th Army Corp is on the other side of the river bayou Rapides north of town.
Mon. March 21: A reconnoitering force was ordered out this morning. We unloaded our battery before day. Rained this morning and quite disagreeable. We started out just after daylight up the bayou rapids in a northwest direction, made a forced march to Pino Hill. There was some skirmishing, formed in line of battle twice. Our cavalry surprised and captured four pieces of artillery and 250 prisoners about midnight with a lot of ammunition, horses and equipment.
Tues. March 22: Rained considerable and was very disagreeable last night. We went up this morning after the captured guns. Crossed the bayou, found a strong natural fortification on a high hill with a wide levee bottom on the south and east. Started back about 11 oclock with 4 pieces captured artillery, 250 prisoners, about 200 horses and equipment. We went into camp at 5 oclock in 9 miles of Alexandria. We were out about 28 miles, a beautiful country all the way out.
Wed. March 23: Left camp at 7 oclock. Had good roads and reached Alexandria about 11 oclock. Found a Negro Brigade had come in from Port Hudson. The LIMINANRY came up this morning from New Orleans. We took our old quarters on the CHOUTEAU. My knapsack and all my clothes, writing and other valuables were stolen while I was gone on the reconnaissance. River still on the rise. We have not put our Battery on the boat yet.
Thurs. March 24: Cloudy and cool this morning. Rained though the day and was very disagreeable, loaded our battery in the afternoon. The BLACKHAWK came up this evening, the MESTEAS yesterday and the LaUrel HILL came up about 10 oclock in the night. We received orders to unload our battery about 10 oclock in the night but the order was countermanded in an hour afterwards. Gen. Banks came up on the BLACKHAWK this evening.
Fri. March 25: The boats dropped down this morning to wood. Part of Gen Banks' force came in today. The 1st Indiana Heavy Artillery came with them. I saw Dan and the other boys. Boats returned in the evening and we unloaded after dark with orders to start at 6 oclock in the morning and go up the river 30 miles to embark. The LaCrosse came up from Vicksburg this morning.
Sat. March 26: Left Alexandria about 9 oclock. Gen. Banks' force is not going this morning. Very good roads and beautiful weather. Traveled through a beautiful level countryside all the way up the bayou Rapides. Turned off the road 1/2 mile to the left and camped along the bayou in about 18 miles of Alexandria, close by a nice plantation house, found plenty of forage for our horses tonight.
Sun. March 27: Left camp at 8 1/2 oclock. Passed along where we were the night of the capture of Pine Hill. Passed up the bayou by a large dirt dam and down another bayou or creek and went into camp near the river about 1 oclock. The boats were to come up here and we were to embark again and go up the river. The boats are not here yet. Gen. Banks' Cavalry Division is camped near here, also some artillery.
Mon. March 28: Rained last night and is very muddy and disagreeable this morning. I took a walk up the river to the cavalry camp this evening and saw my friend Christie, now in the 1st Mo. Battery. Some of the boats are getting up this evening, quite nice weather here this evening. The river banks are high and steep here and the river is very crooked. Very nice country round here.
Tues. March 29: The boats are nearly all here this morning. We harnessed and moved down to the boat about noon. Our boat dropped down about a mile to forage and got back about dark when we got orders to load our guns, but it was so dark and the banks so steep we abandoned the idea of loading till morning. Beautiful weather. The pine and bluffs set in here and extend up the river. Some swampy country here.
Wed. March 30: Commenced loading before daylight and finished soon after sunup. The 89th Regt. came aboard about 2 oclock and we shoved off down the river about a mile for wood and some forage and remained all night. Banks' force camped 4 miles south of here last night, his transports have not arrived here yet. Beautiful weather. I am getting tired waiting for the expedition to move.
Thurs. March 31: Dropped down to our old landing this morning and all our infantry went ashore. We took our horses ashore this morning and have remained here all day. It would take a Philadelphia lawyer to tell what kind of maneuvers this expedition is making and what it is going to do. Foraging parties are sent out every day. We receive no news at this place.
Fri. Apr. 1: Cool and windy this morning. There are no sign of moving this morning yet. The LIMINARY and the MESTEAS came up this evening, brought some New Orleans papers but no letters. The LaCrosse was captured and burned below Alexandria. The WOODFORD sunk at the rapids. The ROB ROY came up about sundown with four of 1st Indiana Heavy Artillery guns on board, the other went by land.
Fri. Apr. 2: We brought our horses on board this morning. Some of the boats started about noon. The ROB ROY left at 5 oclock this morning. We shoved off at 2 1/2 oclock up the river. Passed a very narrow chain bridge of hard earth approaching to rock, also passed Calhoun. Quite crooked river and nice country along the river. Considerable pine along the river. We tied up for the night a little after dark a few miles below Montgomery. Warm today.
Sat. Apr. 3: Started about sunrise this morning. Progressed very slowly on account of the river being so narrow and crooked. We stuck several times, once a little after noon and did not get off until after near night. Several other boats stuck at the same bend. Passed Montgomery and tied up for the night a little after dark and received orders to unload at 6 oclock in the morning.
Mon. Apr. 4: Reveille was sounded at 5 oclock this morning. Commenced unloading about 6 oclock. We got our horses all off and received orders to await further orders. Scouting parties of infantry and cavalry was sent out this morning and returned in the evening. We remained here all day waiting orders. The infantry are out drilling today. Quite nice country round here. The river is nice here and runs about due south for a mile or more.
Tues. Apr. 5: Beautiful morning, still waiting orders. Daniel and George Deveter came up this morning. They are camped near Natchitoches 5 miles from here. We are still lying here between Grand Ecote and Compti about 2 miles above Quantico. The transport UNIVERSE from New Orleans came up today, brought us no mail. A scout was sent out again today but found no enemy. Bank's cavalry has captured several prisoners.
Wed. Apr. 6: I was wakened up this morning at 5 oclock with orders to feed and harness and move at 6 oclock. We unloaded our guns and moved onto the bluff when the order was countermanded, but hold ourselves in readiness to move at any moment. So we had a little drill this morning. Our boat is going back to Alexandria with the sick. We have orders to move in the morning.
Thurs. Apr. 7: Left camp at 7 oclock, passed Grandoore and traveled south and west today. Rained considerable today. The roads were very bad and all the way through the pine timber. Stalled two or three times today and had other bad luck, also crossed no streams, but some small lakes. The richest that grows is along here. Went into camp 4 1/2 oclock after marching about 14 miles. Passed no farms today.
Fri. Apr. 8: Rained considerable last night. Left camp at 4 1/2 oclock. We march in the rear today. Had considerable trouble and bad luck getting along today till toward evening we had tolerable good roads. Pine woods all the way and but few houses on this road. Went into camp about 9 oclock in 1/2 mile of Pleasant Hill. Heard cannonading this evening. Traveled 17 miles today, no streams or water near by.
Sat. Apr. 9: Reveille sounded at 2 oclock and we were ready to move by 5 oclock. Fighting a few miles ahead. We were ordered forward about 10 and stood in position near Pleasant Hill till 2 oclock when we were ordered forward again, and formed in line of battle just in the edge of Pleasant Hill. About 5 oclock the firing grew fearful and our force fell back to where our Battery stood. Then our men drove them back and the fighting ceased about 8 oclock.
Sun. Apr. 10: Harnessed at midnight and left camp at 3 oclock. We brought off 2 pieces with us. Our force is marching toward the river today. The Rebs are said to be retreating this morning. Had pretty good roads and got along well today, marched miles and went into camp on the Rio Honde. We took our horses and went about 2 miles after corn, found but little. Quite tired and sleepy, having slept but little for 2 nights.
Mon. Apr. 11: Left camp at 6 1/2 oclock, marched pretty fast. Roads tolerable good but very dusty in places. Nice weather. Made a long halt in 3 miles of the river and reached the river about 5 oclock but not get into camp until 8 oclock with our horses very much worsted. We could not get forage and but little water for our horses. The boats are not here except a few gunboats. River falling.
Tues. Apr. 12: Beautiful morning. We are camped at the edge of a woods about a quarter of a mile from river. I went down to the river this morning and took a good wash. Daniel came up this evening. They are camped just below Grandcore. Cannonading heard all day up the river. Our gunboats and transports are up the river and the Rebs have probably got in their rear. A gunboat arrived from Nashville this evening received a mail.
Wed. Apr. 13: Quite warm today. Received marching orders about noon and to harness and be in readiness at once to move out. Our transports were to be down at noon. We stood in readiness until about 8 oclock and unhitched and tied our horses to the picket rope with the harness on till morning. No boats came down yet. The cannonading has not been heard since noon. Some of the troops have crossed the river.
Thurs. Apr. 14: The SHREVEPORT came down this morning, also the ROB ROY and other boats. Goldsmith and I went down to Grandore (?) today. Saw the 21st boys, went into the hospital and saw Zena. He was wounded above here on the ROB ROY. They were engaged 2 days in the fight. Several boats riddled considerable by musketry, none seriously damaged. Nearly all the boats have now returned, also the infantry force that went up.
Fri. Apr. 15: Rained a little last night. Cleaned up our camp and put it in better order. Boats are still coming down yet but not much prospect of moving soon. The river is getting quite low now. Everything has been quiet today, no cannonading has been heard since last evening. Beautiful weather. Banks' has gone to New Orleans after reinforcements. Some of the 3rd Battery boys were captured across the river today.
Sat. Apr. 16: Beautiful morning. Received orders to load all camp and garrison equipment on the boats and in a few minutes we received orders to hold on till further orders. Daniel came up today again. Some talk this evening of our going through by land to Alexandria and then down the river. There is some talk that Gen. Bank's will go up to Shreveport, yet the river is still falling slowly.
Sun. Apr. 17: Everything is quiet this morning, more so than usual. I went out and heard the old priest of the 58th Illinois infantry Regt. officiate in the capacity of chaplain. We are expecting orders to march pretty soon but we do not know whether we will go up the river to Shreveport or down the river, or even whether the river is still falling yet. Quite warm today.
Mon. Apr. 18: Beautiful morning. Another quiet lonesome day. I worked all the forenoon putting in a new pole in the caisson and fixed up other things. We turned over the two captured guns this morning. The report is today that some of Gen. Steele's Cavalry have come in and it is also reported that the Rebs are coming to whip Banks again before he gets reinforcements or moves again.
Thurs. Apr. 19: We were awakened this morning at 4 oclock with orders to harness and hitch up immediately. Remained in readiness till about 10 oclock and got orders to unharness. I feel quite unwell today, a warm lonesome day. Received orders about 3 oclock to pack up and be ready to move at once. As soon as we get ready, orders came to unharness again. Louder caught some very nice fish in Red River today.
Wed. Apr. 20: Everything is quiet this morning. Received orders to get ready to move at once. Left in half an hour at 1 oclock. Made a long halt at Grand Ecore landing. Tolerable good roads, very dusty. Reached Natchitoches about sundown. Our pickets were skirmishing this evening. Formed a line of battle and had gone to bed when we were ordered to hitch up and we moved up in a new position and formed another line of battle for the night.
Thurs. Apr. 21: Harnessed this morning about 4 1/2 oclock. We remained in position until 10 oclock, then we moved about 200 yards further to the left and formed again and remained in line till about 10 oclock in the night when we started out east across Cain River. Marched about 1 mile and made a long halt and remained till 3 oclock and marched till about daylight and halted again. Heard skirmishing all day 3 miles out.
Fri. Apr. 22: Started forward again about sunrise after the 13th and 19th Corps passed from the Grand Ecore road. Marched till about noon and then halted till about 5 oclock while some skirmishing was going on in the rear. Then we marched till about midnight and then halted till about 1 1/2 oclock and then moved up to Cloterville. Camped about 2 hours. It was 4 oclock before we laid down to sleep having marched two nights and one day right along without resting only by halts.
Sat. Apr. 23: Left Cloterville 6 oclock and went out about 2 miles and formed a line of battle. Cannonading being heard a few miles further on and finally in our rear. Two of our Brigades were sent back and the 3rd Battery and drove them back again. Two oclock and the train started forward and as soon as past we moved forward again. Rained a little early this morning. Went into camp about 7 oclock. Beautiful weather. Unharnessed tonight, were harness 60 hours.
Sun. Apr. 24: We were wakened this morning at 3 oclock by cannonading. Harnessed and ready to move by day. The firing grew pretty fierce and we were ordered to move forward. We took position about 7 1/2 oclock but the Rebs got whipped by 8, so that we moved forward about 8 1/2 oclock. Crossed the Cain river on pontoon, made several halts, took up pontoon. Rebs followed to river but kept under cover. Pine country all the way to Cotile Landing which we reached about 10 oclock and went into camp.
Mon. Apr. 25: Left camp a 11 oclock and went round by Henderson's Hill on account of a bridge being burnt on the road. A little skirmishing this morning. The gunboats and the 3rd Battery shelled the woods some just as we passed Cotile Landing Bridge. Beautiful weather. Road good but very dusty. Two squadrons of cavalry went down the river road. Went into camp at 5 oclock on bayou rapides in about 15 miles of Alexandria.
Tues. Apr. 26: Left camp at 6 oclock. Had only got about 3 miles when skirmishing commenced again in our rear. We turned off the road about 400 yards into the edge of the woods and masked our battery and forces and in about 2 hours the cavalry had drawed them on in range of our right flank when they raised and poured in a valley, but they had discovered the trap and skedaddled a little too soon for us. The 3rd Battery shelled them a little as they went. Reached Alexandria about 5 oclock. Reinforcements came up today.
Wed. Apr. 27: Warm and cloudy this morning. There was an attack on this place while we were gone above. The Rebs came up on the other side of the river. Our men soon made them skedaddle. The river is full of boats now. Some of the gunboats are above the rapids and can't get below. Heard the gunboats firing all day and also at midnight. Went up to the 21st camp this morning.
Thurs. Apr. 28: Uncomfortably warm today. Received orders about 2 oclock to get under arms immediately. Moved back about a quarter of a mile and formed a line of battle and remained in position all night. A strong line was formed resting on the river on our left flank and on the bayou above town on our right flank. Several buildings are to be seen burning along up the bayou tonight. Everything passed off quiet tonight.
Fri. Apr. 29: Remained in position till 8 oclock and then went back to our respective camps. Quite warm today. Everything is quiet today with the exception of the 13th Army Corps moving their camp nearer town. I went up to the 1st Heavy Artillery camp this evening to see the boys. George Deverter came down with me. Wrote some letters today. Any amount of hucksters and bake shop in town now.
Sat. Apr. 30: Received orders to harness and put up one days rations. It was the intention to go across the river and assist in getting off some cotton that was over there. We stood harnessed all day but did not move. Got orders to unharness about dark. Very warm weather. The boats were ordered to coal up last evening. Rather still, lonesome times here. Just at the present time many of the boys are fishing for pastime.
Sun. May 1: Beautiful morning, a still, lonesome day. Went to Catholic Church twice today. George Lowe and Dan Thomas came down today. Levi Reed and I took a walk up town this evening and when we returned our battery was harnessing up. Just had time to saddle and get ready when we started out about 8 1/2 oclock and went out about 4 miles and went into camp about midnight on Bayou Robert at forks of roads.
Mon. May 2: Clear beautiful morning. Harnessed about noon and moved one section on the road leading up the bayou and the other section on the road down the bayou. Harnessed again about 3 oclock and moved down the road and waited till our men came in and then took position at the forks of the roads and went into camp about 5 oclock. Some skirmishing today. About 200 teams were out after cotton, some loaded others returned empty.
Tues. May 3: Received a mail today. The most of our division passed here today going out about Gov. Moore's Plantation. A number of teams passed out this evening after forage. Remained all day at this forks of the roads. Skirmishing again today and some cannonading in the evening out south of here. The 17th Corps camped near here this evening. I went over to 1st Mo. battery to see my old friend Christie
Wed. May 4: Cannonading again this morning out south. The 17th Army Corps moved out at daylight this morning. We graze our horses twice a day now. A train of wagons went out today but could not get any forage for the Rebs'. Gen. Ja. Mower is fighting them pretty faithfully this evening. We remained at our same positions again today - awful dusty. The COTY BELL was captured and burnt today down near Ft. De Rusy, about (?) men were lost.
Thurs. May 5: Harnessed at 3 oclock this morning and left at daylight and went out to Gov. Moore"s Plantation and camped. Expected to get into a fight today sure. We put our horses in a good stable close by. Some skirmishing today but none on our picket line. I was just outside our picket line this morning to see if I could get a peek at the Rebel pickets. Quite beautiful day. Bayou Robert runs by here, also the railroad.
Fri. May 6: Harnessed about 5 oclock this morning. Remained till noon and fed and moved out about 1 oclock, formed several lines of battle. About 3 oclock we got in range of a Reb battery and opened on it with two guns. It only replied twice. We then advanced the other two guns near a bridge on the bayou, but returned and our whole brigade went to the left flank and camped about dark, the firing having entirely ceased. Beautiful country, floods of dust flying.
Sat. May 7: Harnessed at 4 oclock, moved out at 8 oclock. Took several positions, about (?) oclock we took position right on the north side of bayou Moray and opened a heavy fire on the Rebs on the other side. We drove them out of reach of our guns. Two of the 1st Mo. guns were brought up and opened fire on them about 3 oclock. Part of our Brigade crossed over, also 2 Mo. guns. They answered with artillery. The 89th and 119th played on them pretty heavy. After dark we went back to our old camp at Bayou Robert. Reached at 11 oclock.
Sun. May 8: We remained in camp today. The 89th lost 4 killed and 11 wounded. The 119th 1 killed and 1 wounded in the fight yesterday. A quiet and lonesome and is quite warm and dusty. The river is blockaded now below here and communication is cut off by way of river for the present. Part of the 17th Corps camped close here this evening. Forage is getting very scarce in reach of here now. Skirmishing again today by the cavalry in front.
Mon. May 9: A little sprinkle of rain this morning cloudy all day. I feel tired and drowsy today. We are making preparations to move down the river in a few days. Have heard of no skirmishing today. Everything is quiet and peaceable now this evening. Four gunboats have got over the falls. The 13th and 19th Corps are getting in readiness to move down the river from Alexandria.
Tues. May 10: Rained a little last night. Skirmishing this morning. Harnessed about 7 oclock. A dash was made among our pickets and drove in to the infantry pickets when they checked them and drove them back. One section of artillery went out and throwed a few shells and returned. We harnessed up but did not move. We unharnessed about 1 oclock. I rode out about a mile this evening to a sugar plantation, saw some barley nearly ripe enough to cut. Harnessed at 10 oclock tonight.
Wed. May 11: Hitched up at 4 oclock and unhitched and unharnessed about 8 oclock. Cool, windy today. One section of the 1st Mo. Battery went out on picket about 10 oclock last night. Heidrick and I went out about 2 miles last evening and found plenty of dewberries. We are out of food for our horses and grazing has about give out near here. The cistern water has give out here.
Thurs. May 12: All is quiet this morning. There has been no skirmishing near here today. The pickets were fired on last night. The officer of the day reported that he could hear artillery moving across the northwest. Cannonading could be heard today down the river. The 13th Corp has left Alexandria. The gunboats not all over the falls yet. We graze our horses twice a day now. Beautiful weather.
Fri. May 13: Beautiful morning. The gunboats are all over the falls now and all the transports have left Alexandria and 13th and 19th Corps are moving down the river road towards Ft. De Rusy. Preparations are making for the 16th and 17th Corps to move in the morning. The 2nd Brigade has come out here this evening. Received orders about 8 oclock to march at 4 1/2 oclock in the morning.
Sat. May 14: Left camp at 5 oclock. The boats were fired into soon after we reached the river. The gunboats shelled the woods at different times through the day. We passed the 13th Corps and Banks' supply train. The road crowded full of teams all day. The transports moved down as we did, the road leading along the river bank all the way. Camped at 8 oclock near where the Rebs had their battery and captured the gunboat WARNER.
Sun. May 15: Left camp at 11 oclock. Cannonading in front. We left the river about 2 oclock. Skirmishing half mile to our right, marched pretty fast this evening. Reached a little prairie and made a long halt. Heavy cannonading to the southeast near Marksville by the 19th Army Corp. The 13th is in the rear. Reached Ft DeRusy about 11 oclock and camped. Marched several miles through heavy timber after we left the river.
Mon. May 16: Harnessed and moved out on the Marksville Road about 3 oclock. We reached the prairie where a heavy cannonading was going on about 8 oclock. We maneuvered round considerable but never got a chance to fire any. The firing ceased about noon, the Rebs having skedaddled. We left the field about 1 oclock for the Atchafalaya Bayou. Brough was shot this evening by a bushwhacker. We marched slow and camped about 9 oclock.
Tues. May 17: Left camp at 11 oclock. Skirmishing commenced early this morning. The 13th Corps passed us this morning. The 16th and 17th go in the rear today. Marched very slow. Heavy cannonading at different times today, very dusty. We reached the old Rebel fort about dusk and formed a very heavy line of battle and remained in position till daylight and crossed the bayou. Very hard, weary marching in the Inst. Rained a little today.
Wed. May 18: Left camp about 5 1/2 oclock. Crossed the bayou and formed a line of battle. At 11 oclock the skrimishing commenced. We crossed back over and formed in line of battle. We formed in the timber on our left flank and opened fire. They got the range of our battery, we changed our position 3 or 4 times. They made a desperate charge and nearly flanked us. We fell back into the open field and poured a heavy volley of cannister into them. Moved over the bayou and camped about midnight.
Thurs. May 19: Rained a little this morning. All is quiet today. The battle yesterday was a very severe one. The Rebs done some of the best Artillery shooting I ever witnessed. Brooksier was killed and Rayl wounded, lost one horse. The 89th lost (?) killed and (?) wounded. Captain Gifford was killed. We took prisoners. We fought about 4 men to our 1. Very warm and dusty and hard to get water while we were fighting. Fight over at 4 oclock.
Fri. May 20: Hitched in at 2 oclock. We could see the Rebs on the other side of the bayou about a mile off at 9 oclock. The 1st Delaware Battery fired several shells into them and they skedaddled out of sight. We left at 9 1/2 oclock and went to Atchafalaya River and crossed about 2 oclock on a bridge made of boats. The troops all over and the bridge taken up by 5 oclock. We went into camp just across the river about 6 oclock. Rayl died this morning.
Sat. May 21: Left camp at 5 1/2 oclock. Passed the head of Atchafalaya Bayou old river to the Mississippi proper which we reached about 10 1/2 oclock. Remained till 11 oclock and moved down to the ADRIATIC and commenced loading our battery and equipment. Finished loading about sunrise. It has been a very warm day. Felix Myers and Britler came down this morning, also the old 21st Mo. Regt. Cap Moore Brigade Commander.
Sun. May 22: Finished loading all the 16th and 17th Army Corp equipment and left for up river at (?) oclock. Our Battery and the 58th Illinois Regt. is aboard the ADRIACTIC. The river is very high, weather warm. I feel unwell to day and very tired and sleepy, were up all night loading and waiting for them to get ready to load. Gen Bank's force went on down the river by land beyond here, yet good news from the east.
Mon. May 23: Passed Natchez in the night, passed the town of Waterproof on the Louisiana side, and Readney on the Mississippi side, St Joseph, Brinsburg, and Grand Gulf, mouth of Black River, Mississippi. Made slow time, the river is very high. It is quite warm on the boat. Reached the city of Vicksburg about 11 oclock p.m. and landed below town. Smith is new Maj. Gen. of Volunteers.
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