my command, for they have nobly sustained our cause in time of need, have added to the country's glory, and deserve well of her gratitude.
Some officers possibly attracted my attention more than others by their chivalric courage, and inspiriting manner, yet the conduct of all was so noble and unexceptionable that I do not venture to particularize.
The distant picketing was most efficiently and faithfully performed by the cavalry, commanded at different times by Colonel Starke, Lieutenant-Colonel Ferguson, and Major Jones, according as they were present. The nearer picket duty, together with that of being at all times guarded against surprise and ready to meet an attack, was so patiently and carefully performed by the Twenty-sixth, Twenty-seventh, and Twenty-eighth Louisiana Volunteers, under Colonels De Clouet, Marks and Allen Thomas; the Fourth and Seventeenth Louisiana Volunteers, Colonel Allen and Colonel Richardson; also by the Third Regiment and Sixth Battalion Mississippi Volunteers Colonel Mellon and Lieutenant-Colonel Balfour, together with Withers' light artillery, under Lieutenant-Colonel Parker, that I felt secure in giving most of my attention to the bombardment going on.
Whenever events demanded a united movement of all I found a most reliable and efficient officer to represent me and carry out my instructions in the person of my present assistant adjutant-general, Colonel Girault, whose judgment and zeal were never at fault.
Of Captain Lockett, the accomplished engineer officer of my staff, I have to speak in terms of unqualified praise both as regards skill in his profession and qualities as a soldier. The services of such an officer are so important and indispensable as to have all the effect of a positive increase of force in determining the issue of a contest. I most cordially recommend him to notice.
Captain McDonald, brigade ordnance officer, and Captains Frost and Harrod, aides, have in turn performed almost every duty during the siege known to the service; always prompt, they are distinguished for intelligence and perseverance in the performance of duty that merits constant praise.
To the brigade quartermaster, Major J. W. Patton, and brigade commissary, Major Reed, are due such mention as devoted attention to their duties and interests of the service merit; both have performed all the duties pertaining to a department, and both have been compelled almost to create what they have had.
The part borne during the latter days of the bombardment by a detachment from Major-General Breckinridge's division requires special mention. Captain Cobb's company of light artillery, under Lieutenant Gracey, manned a battery which was so spiritedly served as to attract attention on both occasions in which it was engaged and was even noticed by the enemy. The sharpshooters detailed from the same command kept up a galling fire on the enemy during the passage of the vessels on the evening of the 15th, and drove them from the tops. The lamented Colonel Statham's brigade, under his own lead, showed a bravery in guarding the front of attack assigned him that could not be surpassed. On one occasion, having forced his way through a swamp deemed impassable, he made a rush upon the mortar-boats moored to shore, driving the force guarding on board, and had the positions of the boats been accurately known would have taken possession of and destroyed several. The engineer company, under Captain Wintter, was steadily occupied in the repairs of batteries and did valuable service.
The report of the struggle at Vicksburg would be incomplete without the following merited tribute: During the engagement of the 28th