troops was one of importance, and called from the utmost steadiness and bravery in those to whom it was confided. It gives me pleasure to report that they answered every expectation. In many respects their conduct was heroic. No troops could be more determined or more daring. They made during the day three charges upon the batteries of the enemy, suffering very heavy losses and holding their position at nightfall with the other troops on the right of our line. The highest commendation is bestowed upon them by all the officers in command on the right. Whatever doubt may have existed heretofore as to the efficiency of organizations of this character, the history of this day proves conclusively to those who were in condition to observe the conduct of these regiments that the Government will find in this class of troops effective supporters and defenders. The severe test to which they were subjected, and the determined manner in which they encountered the enemy,leaves upon my mind no doubt of their ultimate success. They require only good officers, commands of limited numbers, and careful discipline, to make them excellent soldiers.
Our losses from the 23rd to this date, in killed, wounded,and missing, are nearly 1,000, including, I deeply regret to say, some of the ablest officers of the corps. I am unable yet to repeat them in detail.
I have the honor to be, with much respect, your obedient servant,
N. P. BANKS,
Commander-in-Chief, U. S. Army, Washington, D. C.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE GULF, Before Port Hudson, June 14, 1863.
GENERAL: I have the honor to inform you that, having silenced all the enemy's artillery, completely invested the place, and established my batteries within 350 yards, I yesterday a vigorous cannonade for an hour, and at its expiration made a formal demand on General Gardner for the surrender of the garrison. He replied that his duty required him to defend the place, and therefore he declined to surrender. Accordingly the necessary arrangements were made to assault the works at daylight this morning, after a cannonade and bombardment lasting during the night, renewed with vigor just previous to the attack. The attack was in three columns. One, of a division under Brigadier-General Dwight, was intended to gain entrance to the enemy's works on the extreme left; a feigned attack was to be made with vigor by Major-General Augur in the center, and the main attack was to be made by the right wing, under Brigadier-General Grover. Neither column was successful in gaining the work, but our troops gained advanced positions within from 50 to 200 yards from the works. These we shall hold and intrench to-night. The enemy made several attempts to open with artillery, but was almost immediately silenced. I believe our losses are not heavy except in officers. I regret to say that gallant officer, Brigadier General Halbert E. Paine, fell, severely, but it is thought not dangerously wounded,while leading the Third Division to the attack. I am still confident of success.
Very respectfully, your most obedient servant,
N. P. BANKS,
General-in-Chief, U. S. Army.