On the morning of the 27th of May, I reported again to Brigadier-General Weitzel, shortly after the commencement of the assault made by our right wing. As the country was so densely wooded as to render signaling impracticable, I made myself useful whenever I could as acting aide. On th 28th and 29th of May, no communication was maintained by signals.
On the 30th of May I opened communication with the U. S. sloop of war Richmond (then lying below Port Hudson) from the top of a tree on the extreme right of our line. Second Lieutenant A. M. Jackson, acting signal officer, was at that time in charge of the station on the Richmond. The distance between the stations were from 3 to 5 miles.
The following official messages were sent and received between the 30th of May and the 6th of June, when the station was discontinued, as unnecessary, by the general commanding the right wing:
Let the mortars now fire on the gun which shot at us last night.
The mortars cannot reach the gun.
11 A. M.
An orderly reached Bayou Sara last night with dispatches for the Hartford. Not waiting for transportation, he went by land, and has not yet arrived.
The above are all the official messages which appear upon my defective minutes of the work done upon this station. No signaling was required upon the right wing after the station was discontinued.
Second Lieutenant John W. Dana and Second Lieutenant R. C. Harris assisted me in the duties of the station.
I subjoin a rough sketch* of the country across which we communicated.
On the 8th of July, Port Hudson surrendered to our troops. On the 11th of July, in obedience to orders, I reported to Brigadier-General Grover for duty, and proceeded with him to Donaldsonville.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant
E. H. RUSSELL,
First Lieutenant Ninth Pa. Reserve Corps, and Acting Signal Officer.
Lieutenant GEORGE R. HERBERT.
Adjutant of Signal Corps, Department of the Gulf.
Numbers 17. Report of Colonel N. A. M. Dudley, Thirty-first Massachusetts Infantry, commanding Third Brigade, First Division, Nineteenth Army Corps, of action at Plains Store.
CAMP AT THE PLAINS STORE, May 23, 1863
SIR: I have the honor to report that in compliance with General Orders, Numbers 1., dated headquarters United States forces, camp on Mer-