or of being cut off. If you are satisfied of the presence of a large, force at Canton and north of there, return immediately, leaving Mower's brigade at Haynes' Bluff. If you deem Haynes' Bluff in danger of an early attack, you may also leave McArthur, with the brigade of his DIVISION. Returning, destroy all the forage and stock you can, and obstruct all roads behind you by burning bridges, felling timber, and in all possible ways. I requested Admiral Porter yesterday to send a gunboat or two up the river to cruise until you return. You may rest at Haynes' Bluff with your entire command until you receive further orders from me. Such information may be received from the enemy and sufficient re-enforcements arrive here as to make it advisable to send out an army large enough to clean out Joe Johnston and his party.
U. S. GRANT,
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE TENNESSEE,
Near Vicksburg, MISS., May 29, 1863.
Commanding at Big Black River Bridge:
GENERAL: Burn up the remainder of Big Black River bridge. Make details from the negroes collected about your camp and also from the troops, and have as much of the road taken up, east of the river, as you can. Pile the ties up, and lay the rails across them and burn them up. Wherever there is a bridge or trestle work, as far east as you send troops, have them destroyed. Effectually destroy the road, and particularly the rails, as far east as you can.
U. S. GRANT.
HELENA, ARK., May 29, 1863.
Major General U. S. GRANT,
MY DEAR GENERAL: I received yesterday your communication of the 25th instant,* and take pleasure in being able to say in reply thereto that I shall send you the FIFTH Illinois Cavalry, as soon as transports can be secured, and these I am momentarily expecting from Memphis, whither Chief Quartermaster Hatch has gone.
I also received a communication from Lieutenant Lyford, senior ordnance officer, requesting me to send you four 24-pounder siege guns, with carriages, implements, and ammunition. I had these guns in position, but, by dint of hard labor, succeeded in getting them to the levee last night, and will forward them by first boat.
I cannot, general, with a due regard to the safety of this place, send away any of my infantry regiments. You will certainly do me the justice to believe that nothing short of what seems to me at least to be an absolute necessity would induce me to withhold a single man or omit to do anything left to my discretion that could by any possibility be of any assistance to you.
I trust you will not deem it out of place, general, for me to congratulate you on the triumphant success which has thus far attended your operations against Vicksburg. I need not to assure you that the eyes of the nation, and almost its last hope, are centered in you and the
*See p. 349.