War of the Rebellion: Serial 036 Page 0655 Chapter XXXVI. BATTLE OF PORT GIBSON, MISS.

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guns by men from my line. They rained solid shot, shell, grape, and canister at us for hour and a half, and in many instances their shot struck in advance of the line and ricocheted or bounded over us while in position. Captain De Golyer's battery from our side opened upon the battery of the enemy that was directly in our front, thus placing us directly under the cross-fire of two batteries for upward of an hour. The whistling of the shots over us was indeed sublime and musical, but not a man of us was hurt. It was here, and at that time, that I received an order from General John D. Stevenson, commanding THIRD Brigade, THIRD DIVISION, SEVENTEENTH Army Corps, to move my regiment back, by the flank, to where the line was first formed.

I fell truly grateful to the members of my staff for their good behavior on this occasion; each did his duty well. All the line officers and men discharged their duty as good officers and soldiers always do. This was the first engagement my regiment was ever in, and I must be permitted to say, in justice to them, that their gallantry and behavior on that occasion was only equaled by old and well-tried veteran soldiers. The names of the 2 men that were killed or taken prisoners are John Coffey and Julius Dodson, and Claus Stamps was severely wounded, all privates in Company D. SECOND Lieutenant Henry Miars, in command of the right skirmishing company, is entitled to the respect of his superior officers for the able manner in which he commanded his company.

I am, adjutant, very respectfully, yours,


Colonel, Commanding Eighty-first Illinois Volunteers.

Lieutenant F. WHITEHEAD,

Assistant Adjutant-General.

Number 27. Reports of Major General William W. Loring, C. S. Army, commanding DIVISION. HEADQUARTERS LORING'S DIVISION, Bovina, MISS., May 6, 1863.

MAJOR: I have the honor to submit the following report of my connection with the army recently at and near Grand Gulf:

Agreeably to instructions from the lieutenant-general commanding, I left Jackson, MISS., on Friday, the 1st instant, and moved with dispatch in direction of Grand Gulf, via Edwards Depot, taking with me from Big Black Bridge two regiments of infantry and a battery of artillery of Tilghman's brigade. upon reaching Rocky Springs, about 18 miles from Grand Gulf, we learned that the force under Brigadier-General [J. S.] Bowen had fallen back before a largely superior force from the positions in the direction of Port Gibson toward Grand Gulf. Hearing that the enemy were approaching the Grindstone Ford with the view of turning our force, which was then in a cul-de-sac, we ordered the two regiments and battery to move as rapidly as possible to the ford and hold it at all hazards, and then hastened to the command of General Bowen, which we found in the position reported near Grand Gulf. General Bowen informed me that his force was about 7,000 men, and then in position opposite the enemy, with a bayou between them, but that his force was wholly inadequate; besides, that he had but one day's breadstuffs and no way of getting more, for the reason that the enemy, 40,000