to their front, these guns could not be used during the engagement. Wood's battery, Company A, Chicago Light Artillery, was posted on the road which led directly into the post; Barrett's battery, Company B, First Illinois Artillery, was in the open space in the interval between Stuart's and Steele's divisions, and General Steele had two of his batteries disposed in his front.
My orders were that as soon as the gunboats opened their fire all our batteries in position should commence firing, and continue until I ordered "Cease firing," when after three minutes' cessation the infantry columns of Steele and Stuart were to assault the enemy's line of rifle-pits and defenses.
The gunboats opened about 1 p.m., and our field batteries at once commenced firing, directing their shots at the enemy's guns, his line of defenses, and more especially enfilading the road which led directly into the fort, and which road separated General Morgan's line of attack from mine. I could not see the gunboats, and had to judge of their progress by the sound of their fire. This was at first slow and steady, but rapidly approached the fort and enveloped it with a complete hailstorm of shot and shell. Our field batteries continued their fire rapidly for about fifteen minutes: the enemy not replying, I ordered the firing to cease and the infantry columns to advance to the assault. The line of skirmishers had been withdrawn and the infantry sprang forward with a cheer. About 100 yards of clear space was to our immediate front, and then a belt of ground about 300 yards wide separated us from the enemy's parapet. This belt of ground was slightly cut up by gullies and depressions and covered with standing trees and brush, with a good deal of fallen timber and tree tops. Into this the attacking columns dashed rapidly, and there encountered the fire of the enemy's artillery and infantry, well directed from their perfect cover, which checked the speed of our advance, which afterward became more cautious and prudent.
By 3 p.m. our lines were within 100 yards of the enemy's trenches, outflanking him on our right and completely enveloping his position. The gunboats could be seen close up to the fort, and I saw the admiral's flag directly under it. All artillery fire from the fort had ceased, and only occasionally could be seen a few of the enemy's infantry firing from its parapets; but the strongest resistance continued in our immediate front, where the enemy's infantry was massed, comparatively safe from the gunboats, whose fire was properly directed well to the front lest it should reach our men, whose colors they could plainly distinguish. A brisk fire of musketry was kept up along our whole front, with an occasional discharge of artillery through the intervals of the infantry lines, until about 4 p.m., when reports reached me at the same instant that the white flag had been shown all along the enemy's lines. I myself saw a large, conspicuous white flag displayed at the point where the main road intersected the parapet, and sent forward my aide, Captain Dayton, to communicate with the commander.
Sending orders as fast as possible along the line to the right to cease firing, I followed Captain Dayton and found the place surrendered. Colonel and Acting Brigadier Garland commanded at the point where I entered the lines. I immediately sent orders to General Steele to push one of his brigades along the bayou to his extreme right, to prevent escape in that direction, and dispatched every mounted man near me, under charge of my aide, Captain Taylor, in the same direction, to secure all squads of men who had attempted, or might attempt, to escape. I soon however became convinced that the surrender was perfect