War of the Rebellion: Serial 037 Page 0219 Chapter XXXVI. THE SIEGE OF Vicksburg, MISS.

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the front. Besides the Eight Kentucky Mounted Infantry, which I reported this morning 3 miles beyond Edwards Station, the Twentieth and Twenty SECOND Mississippi Mounted Infantry, have made their appearance also in that direction, encamping on Baker's Creek. One detachment of them (five companies) came within 3 miles of my headquarters. They proclaim themselves loudly the advance guard of large bodies of infantry on their march for this point. To ascertain everything more perfectly, I detailed Colonel Wright's command, with two howitzer, to proceed at once to Edwards and feel the enemy. I only learned since he left that he got as far as Edwards, and am expecting further intelligence momentarily. I shall not fail to inform you of anything I learn. The large number of pickets which in necessary to guard this avenue make the increase of my infantry and cavalry most desirable; the duties are very hard on the command here now.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

P. J. OSTERHAUS,

Brigadier-General, commanding.

Major General John A. McClernand,

Commanding Thirteenth Army Corps.

HDQRS. NINTH DIVISION, THIRTEENTH ARMY CORPS,

Big Black, MISS. June 8, 1863.

COLONEL: After the hard ride which the Twentieth Mississippi was compelled to take yesterday afternoon, the Eight Kentucky made its appearance this morning. They formed in sight of my pickets on the Edwards Station road, and opened fire; but being unable to make my vedettes fall back, they retired on their part again, leaving 1 man in our hands. He gives almost verbatim the same story of re-enforcements arriving to General Johnston's army in the vicinity of Canton, as the prisoners of yesterday-in fact, as everybody does coming from beyond the Big Black; the people are undoubtedly fed upon that hopeful prospect. The present informant adds that an attack would be made simultaneously by Johnston on Snyder's Bluff, and by Breckinridge on the position here, and that it was to be looked for soon. This morning I visited the Bridgeport Ferry and the Macon Ford, and I can say that an access from that direction is rather difficult, the roads are very effectually blocked., there in no ferry and no chance to cross the Big Black between the railroad and Bridgeport, no landing and no roads leading to the river between those two points. Macon Fords in about 1. 1'2 miles north of Bridgeport. I found several boats and ropes, there, which I had destroyed and taken off. The road leading to the ford, being beyond my rayon, is pretty good, but working party will be sent out this night to destroy it. With great respect,

I am, your obedient servant.

P. J. OSTERHAUS,

Brigadier-General, commanding.

Lieutenant Colonel John A. RAWLINS,

Assistant Adjutant-General, department of the Tennessee.

(Copy sent to Lieutenant Colonel W. B. Scates, assistant adjutant-general Thirteenth Army Corps.)