War of the Rebellion: Serial 038 Page 0326 Mississippi, WEST TENNESSEE, ETC. Chapter XXXVI.

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JACKSON, May 18, 1863.

Lieutenant-Colonel BINMORE:

The following has just been received from General Dodge:

Scout reports position of forces about Okolona as follows: Stretched from Okolona to Pontotoc, [J. F.] Smith's regiment, Ewing's [?] battalion, Barteau's regiment; at Okolona, Fourth Alabama, Colonel [W. M.

Inge's battalion, SECOND Alabama; at Aberdeen, four regiments of Forrest's command. Forrest was also reported there, but scout could get no reliable news that he was there. Colonel Thompson was there. Colonel Thompson was there making arrangements for coupling. One brigade of militia, under [S. J.] Gholson, expected there as soon as they could get cars. They talk of a raid to Memphis and on our railroad. Were very confident but few troops were left on the road. Had full news of Streight's capture, and their papers say 600 under Forrest took him. There is no doubt of the re-enforcements going to Pemberton; also of Johnston being there, and up to Saturday morning there is no doubt off Grant's whipping in every fight. Scout says it caused great consternation. The force coming from Georgia stopped some place east of Jackson. They count Grant's force at 50,000, and papers say Johnston will have more. The re-enforcements from Port Hudson that had arrived were two brigades. Vicksburg correspondence of May 13 says Kirby Smith had whipped part of Banks' forces in Louisiana.



JACKSON, May 18, 1863.

Lieutenant Colonel HENRY BINMORE:

The following dispatches have just been received from General Dodge:

General Johnston is in command at Vicksburg, so Mobile papers of 14th say; also that he is taking a heavy body of troops there with him. Paper says an avalanche awaits Grant, and that he will rue the day he crossed the Mississippi. It speaks of Gregg being whipped by Grant at Raymond, also at Mississippi Springs, 8 miles from Jackson; gives names of officers killed, and falls back on hope that Johnston will wipe Grant out.


Scout just arrived from Okolona; left Saturday night; reports that Grant took Jackson on Thursday and burned the capitol; that all the cars, from Thursday to Saturday, were being used in bringing troops from Georgia and South Carolina to re-enforce Pemberton, and no cars arrived there while he was there. He brings Southern papers of 14th. Correspondence from Jackson of 10th says one brigade from Port Hudson had just arrived, and that troops from Georgia and South Carolina were pouring in. Telegram to Mobile News of 13th says Grant was at Jackson, and heavy firing was then heard; also says that Grant has Jackson and burned the capitol; also that troops were pouring in to help Pemberton. I will send position of force south shortly.




REAR OF Vicksburg, MISS., May 19, 1863.

Rear-Admiral DAVID D. PORTER,

Commanding Mississippi Squadron;

My forces are now investing Vicksburg. Sherman's forces run from the Mississippi River, above the city, 2 miles east. McPherson is to his left, and McClernand to the left of McPherson. If you can run down and throw shell in just back of the city, it will aid us, and demoralize an already badly beaten enemy. The enemy have not been able to return to the city with one-half of his forces.

We beat them badly on the 16th, near Edwards Station, and on the 17th, at Black River Bridge, taking about 6,000 prisoners, besides a large number killed and wounded.