War of the Rebellion: Serial 057 Page 0399 Chapter XLIV. THE MERIDIAN EXPEDITION.

Search Civil War Official Records

it all, and why we did not; said it made no difference to her, however as she had sold it to Clemens, and he was to haul it in.

February 27, went out to the Snodgrass place, just beyond; got 82 bales out of a gin 9 of which were marked M. S. and 73 marked B'burg, claimed by Evans; but one head was out of every bale, and about 50 bales more had been broken open in the gin, and the bagging gone. I believe it all to have been C. S. A. or stolen, abandoned cotton. I also brought in another pile of cotton from the same place marked Bruinsburg, 78 bales. Told the general I thought it was private cotton. He said it was no difference; he would seize it; believed it all to be the same lot, and if it was Evans' cotton let him prove it before the assistant Treasury agent. Evans told me he had sold it all to Clemens for $140 per bale, and Clemens to have it drawn to the river. General Ellet told me that McDowell, of Vicksburg, held that all cotton with the ends of the bales defaced, torn out, for newly put in was C. S. A.,or stolen, abandoned cotton; and that a pile that was mixed with C. S. A was all condiment. I therefore, on finding a lot of about 100 or 120 bales, all but 60 broken open and both heads of the 60 bales gone, took it to the river. Three negroes told me the cut the heads out. I asked what for, and they all said it was Government cotton, and Neely had told them to cut the marks off; did it about a week before. Clemens had bought this lot of Neely, and Neely was baling up the rest for him.

I found a lot of cotton in a secluded place on James Creek, 81 bales, marked Dohan on one end of each bale and C. S. A. on the other end of about 60 bales; others the ends were turned inside out; some were painted over. Hauled it all to the river. Also at corn-cribs near by found a lot of cotton marked C. S. A., Dohan, Laurel Hill; some marks painted over, some new heads, and a few heads missing,all intermingled; 113 bales, I believe, in all. Dohan claimed for himself and brother all of these two lots of cotton; showed me a kind of safeguard addressed to all officers and soldiers of the Confederate army, directing them not to burn the cotton, as an arrangement had been made between him ----., as agent for the Confederate States, and Mr. Dohan, by which Dohan was to keep the cotton. I told him I would not respect any such claim. He said there was no C. S. A. cotton in either of two lots of 99 bales, a part of the 113 bales. I overhauled it, and found plenty of evidence that he had lied about it.

General Ellet brought some cotton out of Bayou Pierre in a flat-boat; my men assisted in unloading it; 350 bales, General Ellet said, and all C. S. A., also that Mrs. Crane claimed that she had burned the C. S. bonds, and now owned the cotton again.

I lost 1 man taken by the rebels and hung; had 1 officer and 2 men accidentally wounded.

We saw rebels nearly every day, but were not attacked. We had captured a number of horses and mules, about 70; about 40 or more were turned loose by order of the general.

March 6, I finished hauling the cotton claimed by Dohan, and was then ordered with all my camp and garrison equipage to embark on the marine boats for Vicksburg, where I arrived the next day. On the way up met a boat, and received the following order:



Numbers 60.

Vicksburg, Miss., March 5, 1864

* * * * * *

II. The commanding officer of the Twelfth Louisiana Infantry Volunteers, African descent, will as soon as possible after the receipt of this order embark his com-