War of the Rebellion: Serial 041 Page 0103 Chapter XXXVIII. SIEGE OF PORT HUDSON, LA.

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JULY 11 [?] - 7.30 a.m.

The RICHMOND:

What boats came down, and what news did they bring?

IRWIN,

Colonel, Assistant Adjutant-General.

The Sachem brought dispatches for the admiral. No news.

JOHN C. ABBOTT,

Lieutenant.

Very respectfully, you obedient servant,

THOMAS S. HALL,

First Lieutenant 28th Maine Volunteers, Acting Signal Officer.

Lieutenant GEORGE R. HERBERT,

Adjutant, Signal Corps, Department of the Gulf.

Numbers 11. Report of Lieutenant Joseph L. Hallett, Thirty-first Massachusetts Infantry, Acting Signal Officer, of operations May 12-July 9.

HEADQUARTERS SIGNAL CORPS,

Port Hudson, La., July 10, 1863

SIR: I have the honor to report that-*

* * * * *

May 10, I received Special Orders, Numbers 3., dated New Orleans, April 30, directing me to proceed at once to Baton Rouge, and take charge of the detachment of the signal party at that place.

May 12, I obtained transportation at Alexandria on the steamer Union, and left the same day for Brashera City, via Red River, Atchafalaya, and Grand Lake thence to New Orleans by the Opelousas Railroad. At New Orleans I embarked with my party on the steamer Nassau, and arrived at Baton Rouge on Sunday, the 17th. I immediately reported to Major General C. C. Augur, commanding United States forces at Baton Rouge. Agreeably to verbal orders from Major General C. C. Augur, I made a reconnaissance with a detachment of the Seventh Illinois Cavalry on the 20th to Springfield Landing, for the purpose of opening communication with the fleet below Port Hudson and the army encamped in rear of the rebel batteries on the Bayou Sara road. Finding it impracticable to signalize direct from General Augur's headquarters to the fleet on account of the forest of lofty trees, I ordered First Lieutenant John F. Jencks to establish a signal station at Springfield Landing to communicate with Second Lieutenant A. M. Jackson, acting signal officer on the U. S. S. Richmond and Second Lieutenant John N. Main, acting signal officer on the iron-clad Essex. I also gave orders to First Lieutenant Milton Benner, in charge of the signal telegraph train, to lay the wire of his train from Lieutenant Jencks' station to the junction of the Springfield and Port Hudson roads.

The distance from Springfield Landing to the fleet is 3 miles; from Springfield Landing to the junction of the Springfield and Port Hudson roads, 4 1/2 miles.

The station at Springfield Landing was established on the 21st of May. The telegraph was completed to the junction of the Springfield and Port Hudson roads on the evening of the 22nd and communication opened with the fleet on the morning of the 23d.

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*Portion here omitted relates to operations, April 9-May 14, in West Louisiana, and is printed in Series I, Vol. XV, p. 363.

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