War of the Rebellion: Serial 037 Page 0368 Mississippi, WEST TENNESSEE, ETC. Chapter XXXVI.

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On June 25, at about 5 p. m. the enemy, his first mine under the parapet of the works. The explosion effected a breach thought wich the enemy immediately attempted to charge, but was promptly and gallantly repulsed. The Sixth Missouri Regiment, which had been held in reserve, was on the spot immediately after the explosion, and its commander, colonel Eugene Erwin, was instantly killed while attempting to lead a charge over the works. Six men of the Forty-third Mississippi Regiment, who were in a shaft countermining at the time of the explosion, were buried and lost. At dark the enemy had possessed himself of the ditch and slope of the parapet, and our forces retired to an interior line a few feet back. This point was now-re-enforced by a part of Colonel Cockerell's brigade, of Bowen/'s DIVISION, and work was resumed by the enemy and by us, they mining and we countermining, until July 1, at about 1 p. m. when the enemy sprung his SECOND mine, which was much heavier than the first. The result was the entire demolition of the redan, leaving only an immense chasm where it stood. The greater portion of the earth was thrown toward the enemy, the line of least resistance being in that direction. Our interior line was much injured. Nine men who were countermining over necessarily lost, and a large enemy, however made no attempt to charge, seeming satisfied with having materially weakened the position. I understand that the amount of powder used by the enemy in this explosion was one ton.

While all these was taking place on the Jackson road, the enemy was by no means idle at other points. At the work on the Baldwin's Ferry road his sappers had nearly reached the ditch. At this place we sprung a counter-mine, which was unfortunately a little premature.

The artillery, through well served, was of but little advantage to us during the siege. The enemy concentrated a heavy fire, dismounting or disabling gun after fun. To this fire we could make but a feeble response. ammunition was scarce, and orders fordable its use excerpt against advancing columns of infantry or batteries being planted. The proportionate loss officers and men of the artillery was unusually great

On July, 1, I received a confidential note from the Lieutenant-general commanding, informing me that unless the siege of Vicksburg was raised or supplies thrown in, it would be necessary very shortly to evacuate the place; that he saw no prospect of the form, and that very great, if not insuperable, obstacles were in the way of the latter, and calling for a report as to the condition of my troops, and their ability to make the marches and undergo the fatigues necessary to accomplish a successful evacuation. I laid the matter clearly before my brigade commanders. I was their unanimous opinion, in which I concurred, that although the spirit of the men was good, their physical condition and health was o much impaired by their long confinement in narrow trenches, without exercise and without relief, being constantly under fire and necessarily on the alert, and living upon greatly reduced rations, that they could not make the marches they would have to make and fight the battles they would have to fight against the greatly superior numbers hat would be brought against them in making the attempt to break through the enemy's line. I therefore favored a daputualtion rather than make this attempt, attended, as I though, with such little hope of success.

Finally on July 4, at 10 a. Mn. in accordance with the terms of the capitulation, my troops were marched by regiment over the intrenchments, their arms stacked and left in possession of the enemy, while they returned to bivouac in rear of the trenches.