is 9,000 strong, has advanced with is to Benton, this side the Big Black, but has had to fall back toward that river to find water for his troops; Walker is at Yazoo City, and W. H. Jackson's cavalry, strengthened by some re-enforcements, are between Yazoo City and Mechanicsburg. General Grant is ruminating the idea of an offensive movement suddenly and without impediments from Haynes' Bluff. Will threaten all the enemy's detachments in detail and take them separately, if possible.
Deserters from within the city yesterday vary somewhat in their reports concerning rations, but all agree that pea bread is no longer issued. On Herron's front yesterday the rebels kept up a fire of large artillery, and on McPherson's the fire of an 11-inch mortar was maintained during the day at intervals of thirty minutes. No damage was done by it. The siege works of Sherman and McPherson are slackened in order to give time for McClernand, Lauman, and Herron to bring theirs up. Ord takes command of Lauman's and Herron's DIVISIONS this afternoon. Herron has with him eight regiments only.
I send you to-day by special messenger the topographical map of the siege.
Richmond, La., was destroyed by Mower on the 15th, after a skirmish there with the forces who lately attacked us at Milliken's Bend. Mower had his own brigade and Ellet's Marine Brigade, with ten cannon. After a few shots the rebels fled, and Mower burned every building which had sheltered them, bringing the few women and children who had been left in the place back with him to Milliken's Bend. Colonel Kilby Smith, of the Fifteenth Army Corps, who witnessed the late battle at Milliken's Bend, certified in an official statement that the rebels carried a black flag bearing a death's head and cross-bones.
C. A. DANA
Honorable E. M. STANTON,
Secretary of War.
BEHIND Vicksburg, MISS., June 19, 1863-10 a. m.,,
VIA MEMPHIS, Tenn., June 22-9 a. m.
(Received June 24-3. 35 a. m.)
McClernand last night was relieved of his command and ordered to report to Washington for orders. As the matter may be of some importance, I telegraph the correspondence connected with it. The congratulatory address spoken of in General Grant's first letter is one that first reached here in the Missouri Democrat of June 11. In it he claims for himself most of the glory of the campaign; reaffirms that on May 22 he held two rebel forts for several hours, and imputes to other commanders a failure to aid him to keep them and take the city. The letters are as follows:
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE TENNESSEE
In Camp near Vicksburg, MISS., June 17, 1863.
Commanding Thirteenth Army Corps:
GENERAL: Inclosed I send you what purports to be your congratulatory address to the Thirteenth Army Corps. I would respectfully ask if it is a true copy. If it is not a correct copy, furnish me one by bearer, as required both by regulations and existing orders of the Department.
U. S. GRANT,