Mar 22 1863. I have received a report from Gen. Sherman. The expedition up Steele’s Bayou was a failure. The Rebels toppled trees to block the passage of the ironclads, and only Gen. Sherman’s haste to their aid prevented them from being destroyed by the enemy. I wrote him,
BEFORE Vicksburg, March 22, 1863.
Major General WILLIAM T. SHERMAN, Comdg. Fifteenth Army Corps:
Your report, and also Admiral Porter’s, were received yesterday. As the admiral called for more troops to protect him, I immediately ordered McPherson to send down one DIVISION of his command.
I regret that the chances look so gloomy for getting through to the Yazoo by that route. I had made so much calculation upon the expedition down Yazoo Pass, and now again by the route proposed by Admiral Porter, that I have made really but little calculation upon reaching Vicksburg by any other than Haynes’ Bluff.
As soon as the admiral can get his gunboats back for service, I will concentrate all my forces and make a strike. Finding that we fail in reaching the east bank of the Yazoo upon the route you have gone, there is nothing further to do with troops where you are than to guard the gunboats, and return when they do. What difficulty is in the way of reaching the Yazoo by going down Deer Creek?
U. S. GRANT.
The Papers of Ulysses S Grant, Vol 7, p 455-6
O.R., I, xxiv, part3, 127