TREASURY DEPARTMENT, July 4, 1863.
DEAR GENERAL: It has long been on my mind to express to you my deep sense of your great services to our country, but I have forborne lest you might think I overstepped a civilian's limits. Having occasion now, however, to write you briefly on another subject, I will not deny myself the gratification of adding my personal thanks to the gratitude which the whole patriotic people feel toward you for the patient energy and skillful courage with which you have conducted the military operations under your direction. God has crowned you with success hitherto, and will, I trust, continue to prosper our arms under your conduct.
Vicksburg, probably, has already succumbed. Whether so or not, its speedy fall can hardly be doubted, and its capture cannot fail to be followed by the rapid and complete suppression of the rebellion in the whole region WEST of the Mississippi and by the complete control of the river from its mouth to Cairo.
It has given me great satisfaction to be somewhat useful in sustaining you here by laying before the President from time to time the letters of Mr. Mellen, the excellent supervising special agent of the Department for the Valley of the Mississippi. He has taken every pains to inform himself accurately, and has constantly defended you against the assault, sometimes of slanderous malice, sometimes of mistaken honesty, and has as constantly awarded to you the praise of doing all that ability, zeal, and fidelity could accomplish.
Yours, very truly,
S. P. CHASE.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE TENNESSEE,
Near Vicksburg, July 4, 1863.
Major General R. TAYLOR,
Commanding Confederate Forces, Alexandria, La.:
GENERAL: Your letter of the 27th of June, disclaiming the act of hanging Union soldiers who were taken prisoners by your forces near Milliken's Bend on the 7th of June, is just received. I could not credit the story, though told so straight, and I am now truly glad to hear your denial. The prisoners taken by our forces have not been subjected to any harsh treatment in consequence of the statements detailed in my former letter.
In the matter of treatment of negro soldiers taken prisoners, I do not feel authorized to say what the Government may demand in regard to them, but having taken the responsibility of declaring them free, and having authorized the arming of them [sic] and another for the white soldiers.
This, however, is a subject I am not aware of any action having been taken upon.
I am, general, your obedient servant,
U. S. GRANT.
HDQRS. DEPT. OF THE TENN., near Vicksburg, July 4, 1863.
Your note has been received. Propositions have been sent in for the surrender of Vicksburg. Pemberton's reply is momentarily expected. If he does not surrender now, he will be compelled to by his men within two days, no doubt. The orders will be made as you suggest the mo-