telegraphed yesterday that gunboats had again been repulsed by our Iowa battery, one of them so badly damaged as to drift broadside down the river, unable to work her engines.
JNO. POPE, Major-General.
NEW MADRID, MO., April 9, 1862.
The canal across the peninsula opposite Island Numbers 10, and for the idea of which i am indebted to General Schuyler Hamilton, was completed by Colonel Bissell's Engineer Regiment, and four steamers brought through on the night of the 6th. The heavy batteries I had thrown up below Tiplonville completely commanded the lowest point of the high ground on the Tennessee shore, entirely cutting off the enemy's retreat by water. His retreat by land had never been possible through the swamps.
On the night of the 4th Captain Walke, of the Navy, ran the enemy's batteries at Island Numbers 10 with the gunboat Carondelet and reported to me here. On the night of the 6th the gunboat Pittsburgh also ran the blockade.
Our transports were brought into the river from the bayou, where they had been kept concealed, at daylight on the 7th, and Paine's division loaded. The canal has been a prodigiously laborious wok. It was 12 miles long, 6 mils of which were through heavy timber, which had to be sawed off by hand 4 feet under water. The enemy has lined the opposite shore with batteries, extending from Island Numbers 10 to Tiptonville, Meriweather Landing, to prevent the passage of the river by this army. I directed Captain Walke to run down with the two gunboats at daylight on the 7th to the point selected for crossing, and silence the enemy's batteries near it. He performed the service gallantly, and I here bear testimony to the through and brilliant manner in which the officer discharged his difficult duties with me, and to the hearty and earnest zeal with which at all hazards he co-operated with me.
As soon as he signaled me the boats containing Paine's division moved out and commenced to cross the river. The passage of this wide, furious river by our large force was one of the most magnificent spectacles I ever witnessed. By 12 o'clock that night (the 7th) all the forces designed to cross the river were over, without delay or accident. As we commenced to cross, the enemy began to evacuate Island Numbers 10 and his pontoons along the shore. The divisions were pushed forward to Tiptonville as fast as they landed, Paine's leading. The enemy was driven before him, and although they made several attempts to form line of battle and make a stand, Paine did not once deploy his column. The enemy was pushed all night vigorously, until at 4 a. m. he was driven back upon the swamp and forced to surrender.
Three generals, seven colonels, seven regiments, several battalions of infantry, five companies of artillery, over 100 heavy siege guns, 34 pieces of field artillery, an immense quantity of ammunition and supplies, and several thousand stand of small-arms, a great number of tents, horses, wagons, &c., have fallen into our hands.
Before abandoning Island Numbers 10 the enemy sunk the gunboat Grampus and six of his transports. These last I am raising and expect to have ready for service in a few days. The famous floating battery was