War of the Rebellion: Serial 056 Page 0269 Chapter XLIII. CORRESPONDENCE, ETC. - UNION.

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HEADQUARTERS SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS,

Vicksburg, Miss., November 28, 1863.

Brig. General M. M. CROCKER,

Commanding Fourth Division:

GENERAL: Your division is hereby assigned to the duty of guarding the country to the north and east of Vicksburg, Miss., for the present, and for this purpose will occupy a position on Clear Creek on the Bridgeport road near Hebron, with one brigade, the Second Brigade taking up a position near Templeton's at the intersection of the Benton and Milldale roads. The position of the First Brigade will be given on its arrival from Natchez.

The cavalry brigade under Colonel Winslow, now in camp near Clear Creek, will be under your orders, and will, in concert with you, keep the country west of the Big Black clear of rebels. You will keep in communication with Brigadier-General Force, commanding at Big Black bridge, and will act in connection with him in establishing pickets, vedettes, &c., and in any movements to repel the enemy should they presume to make a sudden dash across the Big Black. You will also keep a good lookout to the northeast, between the Big Black and Yazoo Rivers, and keep the country in the vicinity of Haynes' and Snyder's Bluffs thoroughly patroled.

The large contraband camp on Black's plantation has been threatened several times. This should be covered so as to protect the negroes and Government property in such manner as your judgment dictates.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAS. B. McPHERSON,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS,

Vicksburg, Miss., November 28, 1863.

Brig. General T. KILBY SMITH,

Commanding First Brigade, Fourth Division:

GENERAL: You will, as soon as practicable after the receipt of this order, move your brigade to this place, reporting on your arrival at these headquarters for instructions.

Colonel A. K. Johnson, Twenty-eighth Illinois Volunteers, will relieve you from the command of the post of Natchez. On coming up the river keep a vigilant lookout, and should the guerrillas fire into your boat, land as much force as may be necessary and clean them out.

The pioneer corps of the division will remain at Natchez until further orders, to assist on the fortifications.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,

JAS. B. McPHERSON,

Major-General.

HEADQUARTERS SEVENTEENTH ARMY CORPS,

Vicksburg, Miss., November 28, 1863.

Colonel E. F. WINSLOW,

Chief of Cavalry:

COLONEL: Brigadier-General Crocker,having been assigned to the command of the front, with headquarters at Hebron for the present, your command is hereby placed under his orders, and you