War of the Rebellion: Serial 006 Page 0558 OPERATIONS IN W. FLA., S. ALA., S. MISS., AND LA. Chapter XVI.

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rounding country. To protect it against the annual rise of the river, which commences usually in January and lasts through the spring, embankments of earth, called levees, have been thrown up along its course, which levees extend from a long distance above the city in its front and for 30 miles below. The tops of these levees are much above the surface of the country, so that when the river rises to the height of the levees it is above the level of the adjacent land. Below these levees the river, in years of very high water, overflows the adjoining country almost entirely. The land above the city, with the exceptions indicated, is generally low and swampy, the city itself extending for miles immediately along the banks of the Mississippi River, but the inhabited part not extending far back towards the swamp.

For further answer of this question, and as explanatory of the above, I submit the accompanying map, which, while not correct in all minor details, gives all the general features of the country with sufficient accuracy to enable the court to understand the numerous routes by which the department cloud be entered.

(The map above referred to was inspected by the court, and is hereto appended as document Numbers 2.*)

The court adjourned to meet at 11 a. m. 7th instant.

JACKSON, MISS., April 7, 1863-11 a. m.

The court met pursuant to adjournment.

Present, all the members of the court, the judge-advocate, and Major General Mansfield Lovell.

The proceedings of yesterday were read over.

Examination of Major General MANSFIELD LOVELL, continued.


Question. What instructions, if any, did you receive on assuming command, from the War Department? What report was made to you by your predecessor of the existing state of affairs at the time; and what was the general military condition of Department Numbers 1 as you found it?

Answer. I received no specific instructions whatever from the War Department. The subject was referred to by the Secretary of War and Adjutant-General Cooper, but they seemed to think it not necessary, expressing confidence in my judgment and ability to do what was right and proper. I requested authority to control all matters for the defense of my department, naval and military, on the water as well as on land, assigning my reason therefor; but this authority was declined, as will appear by the letters of the President and Secretary of war hereunto appended. (Marked documents Nos. 3 and 4.) When I arrived in New Orleans, my predecessor, Major-General Twiggs, made no official report of the condition of affairs, but stated to me verbally that the department was almost entirely defenseless; that he had been unalbe to get anything done, and that at many points we could not make an hour's fight. He dwelt particularly upon the want of guns and ammunition. He gave me little or no information, as he said his feeble state of health had prevented him from making personal inspections of the various points of the department.

I assumed command on October 18, and in order to acquaint myself with the exact condition of the defenses, the topography of the country, the approaches, &c., of all of which I was entirely ignorant, I made personal inspections and critical examinations throughout the whole extent of the department. These inspections, together with the details of the office, occupied me night and day for more than two weeks. I found matters generally so deficient and incomplete, that i was unwilling to commit their condition to paper for fear of their falling into wrong hands, and so stated to the Secretary. The troops (three regiments) on the Mississippi coast were badly armed and had very little ammunition-one of the regiments not more than five rounds per man. The entrances to Pearl River were entirely unobstructed, as, indeed, were all the other inlets and approaches into the country. In addition to the works hereafter to be named, there was an open battery of ten 24-pounders on Bayou Bienvenue, one of five on Phillippon, and two small earthworks, intended for five guns each, had been thrown up guarding the approaches to Berwick Bay, but had not been completed.

The forts in the department viz, Pike, Macomb, Saint Philip, Jackson, and Livingston were originally small works of a very inferior class, built of brick and earth,


*Not found.