War of the Rebellion: Serial 038 Page 0710 Mississippi, WEST TENNESSEE, ETC. Chapter XXXVI.

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JACKSON, April 2, 1863.

Major-General STEVENSON, Vicksburg:

Have telegraphed to Weldon to go immediately. You will, of course, work night and day. Tell the newspapers to keep strict silence.

J. C. PEMBERTON.

JACKSON, April 2, 1863.

Major-General STEVENSON, Vicksburg:

Farragut's vessels are at the mouth of Red River.

J. C. PEMBERTON.

HDQRS. SECOND DIV., DEPT. MISS. AND EAST. La.,

Vicksburg, April 2, 1863.

Major R. W. MEMMINGER,

Asst. Adjt. General, DEPT. of MISS. and East. La., Jackson:

MAJOR:

The enemy reconnoitered Snyder's Mill yesterday. Four gunboats and one or two transports came in sight. After throwing a few shells, they retired. Nine gunboats are now at the mouth of the Yazoo. The two dredge-boats, and a THIRD, which they have just completed, have gone up the river (Mississippi). I hear from planters from many directions above that the enemy are organizing expeditions for the purpose of attempting to get into upper Deer Creek through Bolivar Lake, into Bayou Phaliah from Concordia, and into the Sunflower through the Hushpuckanaw. If they succeed in making their way into either the Bayou Phaliah or the Hushpuckanaw, especially the latter, they will find no difficulty in navigating those streams directly to the Yazoo. Bayou Phaliah can be obstructed, but I believe the Sunflower cannot be, without the construction of rafts and the erection of batteries. I have a force in Deer Creek. I cannot spare a sufficient number from the troops now here to watch and defend both rivers. If they succeed in getting into Sunflower, Loring's rear will have been turned, and his position consequently rendered untenable. I respectfully suggest that Maury be sent back at once with [J. C.] Moore's brigade. With that additional force, if we move quickly, we may command the entrances to all these rivers. For it we need all the boats that can be spared. In moving backward and forward, they can bring out supplies from the rivers. The Dew Drop on her last trip went nearly to the head of Sunflower, within 5 miles of Friar's Point. I believe that the object in concentrating their gunboats is to divert our attention from operations above, by making demonstrations against Vicksburg and Snyder's. The upper portion of the raft, under the heavy pressure of the drift and the present strong current in the Yazoo, gave way yesterday. Every effort has been and is being made with two steamers to relieve the raft of this pressure. The main raft is being further secured by chains, so that if it should, give way it will swing around and be relieved of the drift and still be held. As soon as we get the 10-inch gun in position here, I think at least one gun as heavy as a 32-pounder should be sent to Snyder's. If possible to obtain any more, they should be send there at once, as the armament there is entirely too weak. I have made so many unsuccessful requisitions upon the Ordnance Department that I have caused a Statement to be made out, which will enable the lieutenant-general to see in five minutes what is needed here. I heard this morning for the first time, from the railroad company, that a lot of ammunition had been on their train here for two days, without