War of the Rebellion: Serial 037 Page 0528 Mississippi, WEST TENNESSEE, ETC. Chapter XXXVI.

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HEADQUARTERS,

Army before Jackson, July 17, 1863---6 a. m.

General Johnston evacuated Jackson last night. I will occupy it with one DIVISION of Steele, and hasten the enemy on his way east, but, in the mean time, the weather is too hot for a vigorous pursuit. Railroad north and south is being absolutely annihilated.

W. T. SHERMAN,

Major-General.

Major General U. S. GRANT,

Commanding Department of the Tennessee, Vicksburg, MISS.

JACKSON, July 17, 1863---8 p. m.

I have just made the circuit of Jackson. We are in full possession, and Johnston is retreating east, with, 30,000 men, who will perish by heat, thirst, and disappointment. The place has been well fortified. We have the heavy guns and about 400 prisoners, and more being picked up hourly. I do not pursue, because of the intense heat, dust, and fatigue of the men; but I will perfect the work of destruction, and await orders. Trains all safe. I propose to break railroad 10 miles south, east, and north, and out for 40 and 60 miles in spots. We are in possession of some 50 cars, which will be burned. What more shall I do?

W. T. SHERMAN,

Major General.

General GRANT.

HEADQUARTERS,

Army before Jackson, July 17, 1863---9 p. m.

All my cavalry is off at this time, breaking road at and beyond Canton to the north, and as far as Brookhaven south. I doubt the policy of holding this place for any length of time. All the DIVISIONS, brigades, and regiments are so reduced, and so many officers of rank are sick and wounded-determined on furloughs-that I doubt if my corps will keep up to 8,000 men if kept here. Every officer and man is an applicant for furlough. At Big Black River we could better mask our troops, and sally forth when the time comes. Here we would have our ranks counted every day. In three days I could complete the destruction of roads, and reach Big Black River without renewing supplies. Johnston got off his baggage and sick by cars.

W. T. SHERMAN,

Major-General.

General GRANT.

HEADQUARTERS,

Army before Jackson, July 17, 1863---9. 30 p. m.

I will order General Parke to march to Vicksburg the day after tomorrow. I will feel toward the east, with Ord's corps and my own, await the return of one detachment, and then return to Big Black River. In the mean time, if you think best, I will hold Jackson, though, as I said before, I think it imprudent. Ord's corps is very much out of order, and mine reduced by sickness, casualties, and a desire for rest. General W. S. Smith is really quite ill, and says he must