command having the advance, under your personal direction. The forty-sixth Indiana was disembarked first for a reconnaissance to the front, and drove in the enemy's pickets. The command was then encamped at that place. Has done during all the time of our stay picket duty in the front; furnished heavy fatigue details for the construction of batteries; has made reconnaissance to McNutt, toward the Yalabusha and Yazoo Rivers. The command was in the beginning suffering for medical stores and medicines, but was soon fully supplied. Officers and men have cheerfully performed the heavy duties required by the situation. The position was finally evacuated on the 5th day of April, and the command arrived at Helena on the 8th. The inclosed tabular statement gives the loss of the command. Considering that parts of the command have been under the fire of the enemy all the time, the loss is extremely light.
I cannot close this report without mentioning the good effect obtained by the strict discipline enforced under your command.
General L. F. Ross.
Reports of Brigadier General Cadwallader C. Washburn, U. S. Army, of preliminary operations.
HEADQUARTERS DISTRICT OF EASTERN Arkansas,
Helena, Ark., February 18, 1863.
Major General U. S. GRANT,
Commanding Army of the Tennessee:
GENERAL: I have the honor herewith to hand to you two autograph letters from Brigadier-General Washburn, in command of the enterprise at the Yazoo Pass, which I think will be the best report I can make to you of the progress of that enterprise. I have no doubt that the plan upon which we are there working will be successful, and will prove of great advantage to us. I will issue such a dispatch as is suggested by General Washburn in Inclosure
I am, general, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
B. M. PRENTISS,
Brigadier-General, Commanding District.
[Inclosure Number 1.]
HEADQUARTERS YAZOO PASS EXPEDITION,
February 16, 1863.
GENERAL: I shall send a steamer up in the morning with 3 wounded men who were shot to day by rebel cavalry. They are still hanging around, watching our movements and embarrassing us a little. I report good progress to day. Have taken out a good many very large trees, and I believe that in four days I can reach the Coldwater, and if the water does not fall any more I will have a channel cut that will take through a boat 200 feet and 50 feed wide. I am satisfied that they cannot establish any timber blockade that I
cannot remove. My recon