War of the Rebellion: Serial 036 Page 0179 Chapter XXXVI. GENERAL REPORTS.

Search Civil War Official Records

the fort with about 20 men, capturing many prisoners, and remaining inside the works until nearly all were killed. This occurred between 10. 30 and 12 m., as near as I can judge. Sergeant Griffith was inside the fort over an hour, and had I had the men to send to his aid, I could have retained it in full possession.

3. Two stand of colors were planted upon the parapet of the fort by 11 a. m., and remained there all day, in spite of all the efforts of the enemy to capture them. Late in the evening, as it was nearly dark, they were taken, having floated for over nine hours on the highest portion of the works.

4. * * * Between 11 a. m. and 12 m. I observed that the enemy all along the line, especially at the fort to my right, seemed to be panic-stricken, and it is my impression that could a strong attack have them been made, the works would have all been carried.

5. The ground upon which Maloney's battery was situated was about 600 yards from the works of the enemy, and was the most commanding position in the neighborhood, and afforded ample opportunity for witnessing all the movements of the Thirteenth Army Corps. From my position on the fort I could see nothing of that portion of the field where General McPherson's headquarters were, and am convinced no one could observe the operations of my command from that point.

I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,

HARVEY GRAHAM,

Lieutenant-Colonel Twenty-SECOND Iowa Infantry.

5. -Letter of Major J. B. Atherton.

KNOXVILLE, IOWA, September 5, 1863.

Major General John A. McClernand:

DEAR SIR: In answer to certain questions propounded by you concerning my knowledge of the action of the Thirteenth Army Corps in the assault upon the enemy's defenses in the rear of Vicksburg on May 22 last, I would state:

1. That I was major of the Twenty-SECOND Regiment Iowa Volunteer Infantry, and participated in said assault. I was with the left wing of my regiment, and, from the rough and uneven character of the country and the abatis of the enemy, could not see the action of any but my own brigade. The assault began near 10 a. m., and within three-quarters of an hour from that time the colors of our regiment and one other [Seventy-seventh Illinois] were raised upon the fort immediately in our front. The fort was occupied by our men from one or two hours. Our colors remained upon it for the same time. We were successful, and could have held what we had gained had we been re-enforced at the proper time. We were compelled to fall back before superior numbers of the enemy and our men to abandon the fort.

2. The enemy was driven from the fort above referred to. It was occupied by our men; held by them over an hour-as long as it was possible to hold it without additional force. The two stand of colors mentioned in my answer to the first interrogatory were planted on it, one of which remained there several hours.

3. I have ever been of opinion, and have no doubt, that had we been re-enforced by two DIVISIONS when in possession of the fort, we would have held it, forced our way through the enemy's works, and driven them from our right and left. The possession of this fort by us divided the enemy, and prevented them from rallying rapidly from right to left as occasion might require, giving us command of the rifle-pits on either side, which could soon have been cleared of the enemy, and an entrance made for any number of troops needed.

4. The position of Maloney's battery being immediately in our read and on a high point, afforded a much better opportunity for witnessing the action of the Thirteenth Army Corps than any position a half mile or more either to the right or left of it could afford.

I am, general, with much respect, your obedient servant,

J. B. ATHERTON,

Late Major Twenty-SECOND Iowa Infantry.

6. -Letter of Sergt. A. H. Rugg.

SPRINGFIELD, ILL., August 31, 1863.

I hereby certify that I was on the field with Major-General at Vicksburg on May 22, 1863, and saw the flags of the Seventy-seventh Illinois Infantry planted on the rebel forts. The national colors were afterward carried inside and captured, together with a number of men of the regiment, after nightfall.

A. H. RUGG,

Sergeant Company A, Seventy-seventh Illinois Infantry.