War of the Rebellion: Serial 037 Page 0179 Chapter XXXVI. THE SIEGE OF Vicksburg, MISS.

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right, gave cover to within from 10 feet to 200 yards of the enemy's works viz: 1, Thayer's; 2 Ewing's; 3 Giles A. Smith's; 4, Ranson's; 5, Logan's, on the Jackson road; 6 A. J. Smith's on Baldwin's Ferry road, and 10 Herron's on the Warrenton road. From this date till July 1 the work was steadily pushed forward, when approaches Nos. 1 and 9 were within 30 yards or less and Number 10 within 120 yards of the enemy's ditch, while Nos. 2,4,5, and 6 were up to or in the ditch. In the closer approaches the enemy now seriously annoyed our working parties with hand-grenades, making if difficult to keep them mortars was severely felt, and Mr. Tresilian, civil assistant engineer, made some wooden mortars for 6 and 12 pound shells, which very effective at from 100 to 150 yards. Mines had been constructed from approaches Nos. 2,5 and 6, which it was proposed to explode immediately before an assault. The enemy's counter-mines, however, made it necessary to fire one in front of Number 5 of July 1, the charge being about 1,800 pounds. The explosion completely destroyed the enemy's parapet at the point making a crater of 30 feet diameter, and blowing some half dozen of the enemy into our lines, one of them alive. A mine had been exploded near this place the 25th of June, and, after suffering heavily, our men were forced to retire from the crater. No attempt was made to occupy this. The enemy used mines at several points, but they were feeble, doing no damage beyond crushing some galleries. The hand-to-hand character of the fighting in the closer approaches now showed that little farther progress could be made by digging alone. The enemy's works were weak, and at ten different points we could put the assault would be little easier if we waited ten days more. Accordingly, on July 1, it was decided to assault on the morning of the 6th of July. Orders were once issued to widen where necessary the main approaches, so as to permit the movement of troops by fours with ease, and to permit artillery to move along some of them; to prepare planks, and sand-bats stuffed with pressed cotton, for crossing ditches, and to arrange the heads of saps for the easy debouch of troops. These preparations were in progress when the place surrendered, on the 4th of July, 1863. An examination of the enemy's line showed that it consisted of a series of small works for artillery, on prominent points, connected by small trenches or rifle-pits, thus forming a continuous line. The forms of the works for artillery depended usually on that of the ridge on which they stood, only one being a closed work. The cross-section of the trench or rifle-pit was 4 feet wide by 3 feet deep. In a few places attempts at the construction of obstacles, such as abatis, telegraph wire woven among stakes, sharpened sticks stuck in the ground, and inclining to the front and 2 or 3 feet high. The line was well located, being nearly always on a dividing ridge the slopes of ravines in its front in many places so steep as to make it difficult for footmen to ascend them, both slopes and bottoms being often covered with fallen timber. The ground over which our approaches ran was a net-work of ridges and ravines, the only level ground being in the bottoms of the ravines, which were often 100 feet deep, with very steep sides. Although the enemy had over one hundred and thirty-guns of all