“News just received from Vicksburg says water now in old canal, and rising rapidly”

Jan 27 1863.  Our approach to Vicksburg is hindered by the fact that boats cannot pass the fort without being exposed to a deadly artillery fire.  There had been an attempt to dig a canal to bypass the fort last summer, but it was abandoned.  Our plan is to begin work on the canal again, so that our troops can land south of the city.  I sent the following telegram to Gen. Halleck,

Major General H. W. HALLECK,

General-in-Chief:

News just received from Vicksburg says water now in old canal, and rising rapidly. In a short time our batteries of Parrott guns will command the river below town. Vicksburg papers say that General Banks is fortifying Baton Rouge. I hold two divisions here ready to re-enforce the expedition as soon as wanted; also Gorman’s forces.

U. S. GRANT,

Major-General, Commanding.

The Papers of Ulysses S Grant, Vol 7, p 252

O.R., I, xxiv, part 1, p 10

“Grant’s Canal.” Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. 3 November 2011. Web. 27 January 2013. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grant%27s_Canal>

Grants_Canal_detail

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