May 26 1863. While we have Vicksburg invested, we must guard against an attack on our rear by Gen. Johnston’s forces. We can clear the countryside of any supplies his army could use, forcing him to rely on a long and tenuous supply line.
HEADQUARTERS DEPARTMENT OF THE TENNESSEE,
Near Vicksburg, May 26, 1863
Commanding United States Forces, Black River Bridge:
GENERAL: Direct Colonel Johnson, if he has not already passed, to go by way of Bolton, and destroy all the cars, Confederate cotton, grain, and provisions in store there. If Johnson has passed, send some of the cavalry still left to accomplish the same purpose.
Have your teams bring in all the cotton in the intrenchments opposite you, and as your teams are coming in to the river after supplies left them bring in the cotton with them.
Let the cavalry destroy all the railroad bridges as far out as they go beyond the Black. All forage beyond Black River that can be reached should be destroyed. All negroes, teams, and cattle should be brought in, and everything done to prevent an army coming this way supplying itself.
U. S. GRANT.
The Papers of Ulysses S Grant, Vol 8, p 278
O.R., I, xxiv, part 3, p 351