OFFICE INSP. General HEAVY ARTILLERY, April 7, 1863.
Lieutenant General J. C. PEMBERTON:
Comdg. DEPT. of MISS. and East. La., Jackson, MISS.:
In compliance with instructions contained in Special Orders, Numbers 79, Department of Mississippi and Eastern Louisiana, dated 20th ultimo, requiring me to inspect the heavy artillery at Yazoo City and Fort Pemberton, I have performed the duty assigned, and have the honor to report as follows:
At Yazoo City the armament consists of one 8-inch columbiad on columbiad carriage, and two 20-pounder Parrott guns on field carriages, with caissons. The columbiad had just been mounted in battery on a mound about 1 mile below the city, the location being the best that could be selected to command an approach from below. The mount is elevated about 40 feet above high water, and is distant, say is distant, say, 200 yards from the left bank of the river. The gun has a range from this point of from one-half to three-quarters of a mile on the lower river, which could be increased to about 1 mile by clearing timber upon the bank. The distance directly across to the bend in the upper river is about one-half mile, and by cutting the intervening timber a range could be obtained up that bend. The position selected for the parrott guns is on an adjacent knoll, near to and below the columbiad. The guns and carriages are in good condition, the implements for the Parrott guns complete; those for the columbiad are very defective, nothing having been sent with it but the handspikes and one sponge and rammer. The columbiad is manned by 2 officers and 20 men of the Forty-SECOND Alabama, who have had considerable experience at Force Morgan. The Parrotts are in charge of Tobin's battery. No magazine has as yet been constructed, the ammunition being stored in the city. There are for the columbiad 200 cartridges, 178 empty shells, 172 soli shot, 60 stand grape, and 7 rounds canister, but 124 sabots and 100 straps. No rifle powder for filling the shell or fuses for ditto. The Parrott guns have 200 rounds each, shells filled, but without fuses or caps. A requisition was made on the 23rd ultimo, by order of General Moore, for the articles required to supply deficiencies.
The armament of this force consists of eight guns mounted en barbette, behind breastworks of cotton bales covered with earth, as follows:
Commencing on the left, Numbers 1, banded 32-pounder rifle, en barbette, carriage, manned by a detachment from the navy, in good order, with implements complete. A quoin is used instead of an elevating screw. Numbers 2,8-inch shell (navy) gun, on naval carriage, manned by detachment from Twenty-first Louisiana Regiment, complete and in good order. Numbers 3, 12-pounder rifle, on siege carriage, manned by a detachment from Waul's Legion, under command of Captain Hogue, complete and in good order. Numbers 4,3-inch (18-pounder bolt) Whitworth gun, on field carriage, manned by detachment from Point Coupee (Louisiana) Battery, complete and in beautiful order. Nos. 5 and 6, two 12-pounder rifle guns, siege carriages, in charge of Captain [W. H.] Hedden, complete and in good order. Numbers 7,3-inch Parrott, and Numbers 8,3. 67-inch Parrott (Lady Richardson), in charge of Lieutenant Lambert, Twenty-SECOND Louisiana, both complete and in good order. Between Nos. 4 and 5 is a brass 6-pounder in battery, and on the left (exterior) of the fort are one 6-pounder and one 3-inch rifle, on field carriages. The fort is well located for defense
46 R R-VOL. XXIV, PT. III