War of the Rebellion: Serial 036 Page 0285 Chapter XXXVI. GENERAL REPORTS.

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my colors and arms, stacking them in front of my present lines, after which you will take possession.

Officers to retain their side-arms and personal property, and the rights and property of citizens to be respected.

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


Lieutenant-General, Commanding.

Early on the morning of the 4th, the following reply was received:


Before Vicksburg, MISS., July 4, 1863.

Lieutenant General J. C. PEMBERTON,

Commanding Confederate Forces, Vicksburg, MISS:

GENERAL: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of your communication of July 3. The amendment proposed by you cannot be accede to in full. It will be necessary to furnish every officer and man with a parole signed by himself, which, with the completion of the rolls of prisoners, will necessarily take some time.

Again, I can make no stipulations with regard to the treatment of citizens and their private property. While I do not propose to cause them any undue annoyance or loss, I cannot consent to leave myself under any restraint by stipulations. The property which officers will be allowed to take with them will be as stated in my proposition of last evening; that is, officers will be allowed their private baggage and side-arms, and mounted officers one horse each.

If you mean by your proposition for each brigade to march to the front of the lines now occupied by it, and stack arms at 10 a. m., and then return to the inside, and there remain as prisoners until properly paroled, I will make no objection to it.

Should no notification be received of your acceptance of my terms by 9 a. m., I shall regard them as having been rejected, and shall act accordingly. Should these terms be accepted, white flags should be displayed along your lines to prevent such of my troops as may not have been notified from firing upon your men.

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



In response to this note, I immediately dispatched the following, accepting the terms of surrender as modified by General Grant:


Vicksburg, MISS., July 4, 1863.

Major General U. S. GRANT,

Commanding United States Forces, &c.:

GENERAL: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of this day, and in reply to say that the terms proposed by you are accepted.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,



These terms, it may be proper to add, were approved by every DIVISION and brigade commander with one exception (Brigadier-General [W. E.] Baldwin), who, without offering any objection to them, insisted upon holding out, but assigned no reason for it. In accordance with this agreement, the garrison was surrendered at 10 a. m., and the Federal forces immediately took possession of our works and placed guards in the city. If it should be asked why July 4 was selected as the day for the surrender, the answer is obvious. I believed that upon that day I should obtain better terms. Well aware of the vanity of our foes, I knew they would attach vast importance to the entrance on July 4 into the stronghold of the great river, and that to gratify their national vanity they would yield then what could not be extorted from them at any other time. This question of time was also discussed by a council of my general officers, and my views concurred in.

The assertion that the surrender of Vicksburg was compelled by the want of subsistence, or that the garrison was starved out, is one entirely destitute of truth. There was at no time any absolute suffering for