War of the Rebellion: Serial 036 Page 0412 Chapter XXXVI. Mississippi, WEST TENNESSEE, ETC.

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Number 9.

Reports of Major General William W. Loring, C. S. Army, commanding at Fort Pemberton, &c., of operations February 17-April 11.

HEADQUARTERS FORT PEMBERTON,

March 11, 1863 (Received March 12)

GENERAL: Iron-clad turret-boat Chillicothe came down and attacked us this morning at 10 o'clock. Two of our shots struck her. Firing kept up half an hour, when the boat withdrew. Enemy reported in force landing above about 2 miles, on the opposite side of the Tallahatchee. I have ordered a regiment and battery from [L] Tilghman to Chockachuma, on the Yalabusha, and himself to take the balance of his command to Yazoo City as rapidly as possible. If you can spare other troops and heavy arms, would advise sending them to Yazoo City, and block the river there strongly, in hopes of resisting them at this point. Please order ammunition to be sent, and order Lieutenant Harrod, engineers, at Yazoo City, now at Vicksburg.

W. W. LORING,

Major-General, Commanding.

Lieutenant General J. C. PEMBERTON.

Commanding, &c.

HEADQUARTERS FORT PEMBERTON,

March 11, 1863.

GENERAL: Another of the enemy's iron-clads attacked this position this afternoon, and was repelled with injury.

Our 32-pounder shot nearly exhausted; they are our main reliance. Received this evening extraordinary dispatch from Major Mayo. For some reason unknown to us, he takes upon himself the responsibility of refusing to send ammunition. The requisition, approved by me, was made in accordance with your order, with great care, and by actual measurement of each gun. I hear it is too late to send us. The requisition by Colonel [T. N.] Waul was in invoices sent him of the guns. There was no material difference between the two requisitions.

W. W. LORING,

Major-General, Commanding.

Lieutenant General J. C. PEMBERTON.

JACKSON, March 14, 1863.

General JOSEPH E. Johnston,

Chattanooga, Tenn.:

FORT PEMBERTON, ON TALLAHATCHEE RIVER,

March 13-1 p. m.

Terrific fire from enemy; four hours; uninterrupted; from ten to sixteen heavy caliber gunboat guns; two heavy on land, and a mortar. All their guns from gunboats, except one, have ceased firing. Gunboats retired around the Bend, 800 yards distant, showing only one gun. Enemy's gunboats and batteries struck constantly; large quantities of burning cotton struck from them. We have lost some valuable gunners and a few others. Thank God, our loss small so far. Enemy's loss must be very great.

Later- 7. 30 p. m. - Just as I sent off my last dispatch to you, enemy opened upon us