War of the Rebellion: Serial 024 Page 0623 Chapter XXIX. VICKSBURG.

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Numbers 38. December 30, 1862.

I. The three divisions will occupy the ground now held, keeping the front picket line close up to the bayou and toward Vicksburg. All but the pickets and supports will retire to near the effective range of canister and from line parallel to the country road from Vicksburg to Haines' Bluff arms, and rest. Men may make fires in hollows 500 yards of picket lines.

II. General Morgan' left is on the bayou, and the other division with their pickets will connect with him. General Steele's division will be held in reserve along Chickasaw bayou, with pickets on its east side. The enemy will doubtless shell our position, but our artillery must not reply, unless with a certainty of execution. The ammunition must not be wasted, as they will fire at out whole camp instead of a distinct object. Our artillery should be covered by earthworks, and commanders of infantry brigades will, on application of any artillery officer lying near him, furnish detail for this work.

III. The First and Second Divisions will furnish parties of a regiment each, which will report to Captain Jenney of the engineers with all the exams to be had, to corduroy the road from the landing to camp. The regiment at the steamboat landing will furnish 100 men each, with due proportion of officers,, to work the road along the levee. They must corduroy all the boggy ground. Rations can be had at Lake's; artillery ammunition at headquarters and on board the steamer General Anderson. Musket ammunition should be carefully husbanded and distributed in each division. All musket ammunition not now in the boxes of the men or in the regiment wagons will forthwith be sent on board the General Anderson and delieve to Lieutenant Neely, ordnance officer, who will receipt for the same and reissue to regimental commanders be attended to at once. All absented not wounded must be collected and reports made to respective headquarters of the killed, wounded, and missing.

By order of Major General W. T. Sherman:


Assistant Adjutant-General.



Numbers 39. December 31, 1862.

I. The infantry and artillery of the Fourth Division, General Steele will make preparations during the day for an important expedition: they will provide two days' cooked rations and be careful of the condition of their arms, accouterments, and ammunition; they will be ready to march by dark. One brigade of the Second Division will in like manner prepare for the same expedition. All the officers and men will be instructed that silence is the chief element in the success of this proposed attempt; that all signals of drums and bugles will not allowed, and that absolute silence must be preserved. Steele's division will be disposed so as to move down the road along Chickasaw Bayou, and the brigade of the Second Division back by the main road, so as not to observed by the enemy's lookout on the hill.

II. General Morgan will continue to strengthen his position offense and defense, constructing batteries and parapets to cover his guns and men, make additional roads to his rear.