U. S. MILITARY TELEGRAPH OFFICE,
New Orleans (from Southwest Pass), June 24, 1863.
DEAR SIR: The following is a copy of message just received from Southwest Pass;
Colonel S. B. HOLABIRD, U. S. Army,
On arrival at Atchfalaya Bay, met gunboat Hollyhock and U. S. transport Keppet. They report the surprise and capture of Brashear City, morning of the 23d, at 5 a. m., by rebel forces. The attack was made by 10 more artillery from Berwick Bay, and a rebel force which effected a landing on the north side of the island; came across Flat Lake on rafts.
Nothing was saved. The provost-marshal and a few only escaped who were on board.
W. H. TALBOT,
U. S. Transport Saint Mary's.
The above is the telegram which gives the only account I have of the Brashear affair, and is respectfully transmitted to headquarters.
W. H. EMORY,
HDQRS. SECOND DIV., 19TH ARMY CORPS, Numbers 47.
Before Port Hudson, June 24, 1863.
Colonel Benedict will advance his brigade as skirmishers at 2 a. m., capture the enemy's picket, and draw their fire. General Nickerson will support Colonel Benedict with one regiment upon his (Colonel Benedict's) left, acting in the same manner and for the same object.
The First Vermont Battery will open fire upon the enemy at 2 o'clock, and fire one-half hour, in such manner best calculated to annoy him. General Nickerson will personally see that the new battery is abundantly and fully supported against all possibility of attack from 2 o'clock in the morning until two hours after daylight.
By order of Brigadier-General Dwight:
HDQRS. DEPT. OF THE GULF, NINETEENTH ARMY CORPS,
Before Port Hudson, June 25, 1863.
Brigadier General C. GROVER,
Commanding Right Wing:
GENERAL: Direct Colonel Birge to organize the storming party immediately into two battalions, and to drill it for its work. Too great a proportion of officers ought not to be taken, but 4 may be allowed for each company.
Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
RICH'D B. IRWIN,