The National loss in the second capture of Jackson was less than
one thousand men, killed, wounded and missing. The Confederate
loss was probably less, except in captured. More than this
number fell into our hands as prisoners.
Medicines and food were left for the Confederate wounded and
sick who had to be left behind. A large amount of rations was
issued to the families that remained in Jackson. Medicine and
food were also sent to Raymond for the destitute families as
well as the sick and wounded, as I thought it only fair that we
should return to these people some of the articles we had taken
while marching through the country. I wrote to Sherman:
“Impress upon the men the importance of going through the State
in an orderly manner, abstaining from taking anything not
absolutely necessary for their subsistence while travelling.
They should try to create as favorable an impression as possible
upon the people.” Provisions and forage, when called for by
them, were issued to all the people, from Bruinsburg to Jackson
and back to Vicksburg, whose resources had been taken for the
supply of our army. Very large quantities of groceries and
provisions were so issued.
Sherman was ordered back to Vicksburg, and his troops took much
the same position they had occupied before–from the Big Black
to Haines’ Bluff. Having cleaned up about Vicksburg and
captured or routed all regular Confederate forces for more than
a hundred miles in all directions, I felt that the troops that
had done so much should be allowed to do more before the enemy
could recover from the blow he had received, and while important
points might be captured without bloodshed. I suggested to the
General-in-chief the idea of a campaign against Mobile, starting
from Lake Pontchartrain. Halleck preferred another course. The
possession of the trans-Mississippi by the Union forces seemed
to possess more importance in his mind than almost any campaign
east of the Mississippi. I am well aware that the President was
very anxious to have a foothold in Texas, to stop the clamor of
some of the foreign governments which seemed to be seeking a
pretext to interfere in the war, at least so far as to recognize
belligerent rights to the Confederate States. This, however,
could have been easily done without wasting troops in western
Louisiana and eastern Texas, by sending a garrison at once to
Brownsville on the Rio Grande.
Halleck disapproved of my proposition to go against Mobile, so
that I was obliged to settle down and see myself put again on
the defensive as I had been a year before in west Tennessee. It
would have been an easy thing to capture Mobile at the time I
proposed to go there. Having that as a base of operations,
troops could have been thrown into the interior to operate
against General Bragg’s army. This would necessarily have
compelled Bragg to detach in order to meet this fire in his
rear. If he had not done this the troops from Mobile could have
inflicted inestimable damage upon much of the country from which
his army and Lee’s were yet receiving their supplies. I was so
much impressed with this idea that I renewed my request later in
July and again about the 1st of August, and proposed sending all
the troops necessary, asking only the assistance of the navy to
protect the debarkation of troops at or near Mobile. I also
asked for a leave of absence to visit New Orleans, particularly
if my suggestion to move against Mobile should be approved. Both
requests were refused. So far as my experience with General
Halleck went it was very much easier for him to refuse a favor
than to grant one. But I did not regard this as a favor. It was
simply in line of duty, though out of my department.
The General-in-chief having decided against me, the depletion of
an army, which had won a succession of great victories,
commenced, as had been the case the year before after the fall
of Corinth when the army was sent where it would do the least
good. By orders, I sent to Banks a force of 4,000 men; returned
the 9th corps to Kentucky and, when transportation had been
collected, started a division of 5,000 men to Schofield in
Missouri where Price was raiding the State. I also detached a
brigade under Ransom to Natchez, to garrison that place
permanently. This latter move was quite fortunate as to the
time when Ransom arrived there. The enemy happened to have a
large number, about 5,000 head, of beef cattle there on the way
from Texas to feed the Eastern armies, and also a large amount
of munitions of war which had probably come through Texas from
the Rio Grande and which were on the way to Lee’s and other
armies in the East.
The troops that were left with me around Vicksburg were very
busily and unpleasantly employed in making expeditions against
guerilla bands and small detachments of cavalry which infested
the interior, and in destroying mills, bridges and rolling stock
on the railroads. The guerillas and cavalry were not there to
fight but to annoy, and therefore disappeared on the first
approach of our troops.
The country back of Vicksburg was filled with deserters from
Pemberton’s army and, it was reported, many from Johnston’s
also. The men determined not to fight again while the war
lasted. Those who lived beyond the reach of the Confederate
army wanted to get to their homes. Those who did not, wanted to
get North where they could work for their support till the war
was over. Besides all this there was quite a peace feeling, for
the time being, among the citizens of that part of Mississippi,
but this feeling soon subsided. It is not probable that
Pemberton got off with over 4,000 of his army to the camp where
he proposed taking them, and these were in a demoralized
On the 7th of August I further depleted my army by sending the
13th corps, General Ord commanding, to Banks. Besides this I
received orders to co-operate with the latter general in
movements west of the Mississippi. Having received this order I
went to New Orleans to confer with Banks about the proposed
movement. All these movements came to naught.
During this visit I reviewed Banks’ army a short distance above
Carrollton. The horse I rode was vicious and but little used,
and on my return to New Orleans ran away and, shying at a
locomotive in the street, fell, probably on me. I was rendered
insensible, and when I regained consciousness I found myself in
a hotel near by with several doctors attending me. My leg was
swollen from the knee to the thigh, and the swelling, almost to
the point of bursting, extended along the body up to the
arm-pit. The pain was almost beyond endurance. I lay at the
hotel something over a week without being able to turn myself in
bed. I had a steamer stop at the nearest point possible, and was
carried to it on a litter. I was then taken to Vicksburg, where
I remained unable to move for some time afterwards.
While I was absent General Sherman declined to assume command
because, he said, it would confuse the records; but he let all
the orders be made in my name, and was glad to render any
assistance he could. No orders were issued by my staff,
certainly no important orders, except upon consultation with and
approval of Sherman.
On the 13th of September, while I was still in New Orleans,
Halleck telegraphed to me to send all available forces to
Memphis and thence to Tuscumbia, to co-operate with Rosecrans
for the relief of Chattanooga. On the 15th he telegraphed again
for all available forces to go to Rosecrans. This was received
on the 27th. I was still confined to my bed, unable to rise
from it without assistance; but I at once ordered Sherman to
send one division to Memphis as fast as transports could be
provided. The division of McPherson’s corps, which had got off
and was on the way to join Steele in Arkansas, was recalled and
sent, likewise, to report to Hurlbut at Memphis. Hurlbut was
directed to forward these two divisions with two others from his
own corps at once, and also to send any other troops that might
be returning there. Halleck suggested that some good man, like
Sherman or McPherson, should be sent to Memphis to take charge
of the troops going east. On this I sent Sherman, as being, I
thought, the most suitable person for an independent command,
and besides he was entitled to it if it had to be given to any
one. He was directed to take with him another division of his
corps. This left one back, but having one of McPherson’s
divisions he had still the equivalent.
Before the receipt by me of these orders the battle of
Chickamauga had been fought and Rosecrans forced back into
Chattanooga. The administration as well as the General-in-chief
was nearly frantic at the situation of affairs there. Mr.
Charles A. Dana, an officer of the War Department, was sent to
Rosecrans’ headquarters. I do not know what his instructions
were, but he was still in Chattanooga when I arrived there at a
It seems that Halleck suggested that I should go to Nashville as
soon as able to move and take general direction of the troops
moving from the west. I received the following dispatch dated
October 3d: “It is the wish of the Secretary of War that as
soon as General Grant is able he will come to Cairo and report
by telegraph.” I was still very lame, but started without
delay. Arriving at Columbus on the 16th I reported by
telegraph: “Your dispatch from Cairo of the 3d directing me to
report from Cairo was received at 11.30 on the 10th. Left the
same day with staff and headquarters and am here en route for
END OF VOL. I
End of Personal Memoirs of U.S. Grant Volume One
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Personal Memoirs of U. S. Grant
This etext was prepared by Glen Bledsoe.
PERSONAL MEMOIRS OF U. S. GRANT
IN TWO VOLUMES.
PREFACE. [To both volumes]
“Man proposes and God disposes.” There are but few important
events in the affairs of men brought about by their own choice.
Although frequently urged by friends to write my memoirs I had
determined never to do so, nor to write anything for
publication. At the age of nearly sixty-two I received an
injury from a fall, which confined me closely to the house while
it did not apparently affect my general health. This made study
a pleasant pastime. Shortly after, the rascality of a business
partner developed itself by the announcement of a failure. This
was followed soon after by universal depression of all
securities, which seemed to threaten the extinction of a good
part of the income still retained, and for which I am indebted
to the kindly act of friends. At this juncture the editor of
the Century Magazine asked me to write a few articles for him. I
consented for the money it gave me; for at that moment I was
living upon borrowed money. The work I found congenial, and I
determined to continue it. The event is an important one for
me, for good or evil; I hope for the former.
In preparing these volumes for the public, I have entered upon
the task with the sincere desire to avoid doing injustice to any
one, whether on the National or Confederate side, other than the
unavoidable injustice of not making mention often where special
mention is due. There must be many errors of omission in this
work, because the subject is too large to be treated of in two
volumes in such way as to do justice to all the officers and men
engaged. There were thousands of instances, during the
rebellion, of individual, company, regimental and brigade deeds
of heroism which deserve special mention and are not here
alluded to. The troops engaged in them will have to look to the
detailed reports of their individual commanders for the full
history of those deeds.
The first volume, as well as a portion of the second, was
written before I had reason to suppose I was in a critical
condition of health. Later I was reduced almost to the point of
death, and it became impossible for me to attend to anything for
weeks. I have, however, somewhat regained my strength, and am
able, often, to devote as many hours a day as a person should
devote to such work. I would have more hope of satisfying the
expectation of the public if I could have allowed myself more
time. I have used my best efforts, with the aid of my eldest
son, F. D. Grant, assisted by his brothers, to verify from the
records every statement of fact given. The comments are my own,
and show how I saw the matters treated of whether others saw them
in the same light or not.
With these remarks I present these volumes to the public, asking
no favor but hoping they will meet the approval of the reader.
U. S. GRANT.
MOUNT MACGREGOR, NEW YORK, July 1, 1885.
PERSONAL MEMOIRS OF U. S. GRANT
FIRST MEETING WITH SECRETARY STANTON–GENERAL
ROSECRANS–COMMANDING MILITARY DIVISION OF MISSISSIPPI–ANDREW
JOHNSON’S ADDRESS–ARRIVAL AT CHATTANOOGA.
ASSUMING THE COMMAND AT CHATTANOOGA–OPENING A LINE OF
SUPPLIES–BATTLE OF WAUHATCHIE–ON THE PICKET LINE.
CONDITION OF THE ARMY–REBUILDING THE RAILROAD–GENERAL
BURNSIDE’S SITUATION–ORDERS FOR BATTLE–PLANS FOR THE
ATTACK–HOOKER’S POSITION–SHERMAN’S MOVEMENTS.
PREPARATIONS FOR BATTLE–THOMAS CARRIES THE FIRST LINE OF THE
ENEMY–SHERMAN CARRIES MISSIONARY RIDGE–BATTLE OF LOOKOUT
MOUNTAIN–GENERAL HOOKER’S FIGHT.
BATTLE OF CHATTANOOGA–A GALLANT CHARGE–COMPLETE ROUT OF THE
ENEMY–PURSUIT OF THE CONFEDERATES–GENERAL BRAGG–REMARKS ON
THE RELIEF OF KNOXVILLE–HEADQUARTERS MOVED TO
NASHVILLE–VISITING KNOXVILLE–CIPHER DISPATCHES–WITHHOLDING
OPERATIONS IN MISSISSIPPI–LONGSTREET IN EAST
TENNESSEE–COMMISSIONED LIEUTENANT-GENERAL–COMMANDING THE
ARMIES OF THE UNITED STATES–FIRST INTERVIEW WITH PRESIDENT
THE MILITARY SITUATION–PLANS FOR THE CAMPAIGN–SHERIDAN
ASSIGNED TO COMMAND OF THE CAVALRY–FLANK MOVEMENTS–FORREST AT
FORT PILLOW–GENERAL BANKS’S EXPEDITION–COLONEL MOSBY–AN
INCIDENT OF THE WILDERNESS CAMPAIGN.
COMMENCEMENT OF THE GRAND CAMPAIGN–GENERAL BUTLER’S
POSITION–SHERIDAN’S FIRST RAID.
SHERMAN S CAMPAIGN IN GEORGIA–SIEGE OF ATLANTA–DEATH OF
GENERAL MCPHERSON–ATTEMPT TO CAPTURE ANDERSONVILLE–CAPTURE OF
GRAND MOVEMENT OF THE ARMY OF THE POTOMAC–CROSSING THE
RAPIDAN–ENTERING THE WILDERNESS–BATTLE OF THE WILDERNESS.
AFTER THE BATTLE–TELEGRAPH AND SIGNAL SERVICE–MOVEMENT BY THE
BATTLE OF SPOTTSYLVANIA–HANCOCK’S POSITION–ASSAULT OF WARREN’S
AND WRIGHT’S CORPS–UPTON PROMOTED ON THE FIELD–GOOD NEWS FROM
BUTLER AND SHERIDAN.
HANCOCK’S ASSAULT–LOSSES OF THE CONFEDERATES–PROMOTIONS
RECOMMENDED–DISCOMFITURE OF THE ENEMY–EWELL’S ATTACK–REDUCING
MOVEMENT BY THE LEFT FLANK–BATTLE OF NORTH ANNA–AN INCIDENT OF
THE MARCH–MOVING ON RICHMOND–SOUTH OF THE PAMUNKEY–POSITION OF
THE NATIONAL ARMY.
ADVANCE ON COLD HARBOR–AN ANECDOTE OF THE WAR–BATTLE OF COLD
HARBOR–CORRESPONDENCE WITH LEE RETROSPECTIVE.
LEFT FLANK MOVEMENT ACROSS THE CHICKAHOMINY AND JAMES–GENERAL
LEE–VISIT TO BUTLER–THE MOVEMENT ON PETERSBURG–THE INVESTMENT
RAID ON THE VIRGINIA CENTRAL RAILROAD–RAID ON THE WELDON
RAILROAD–EARLY’S MOVEMENT UPON WASHINGTON–MINING THE WORKS
BEFORE PETERSBURG–EXPLOSION OF THE MINE BEFORE PETERSBURG
–CAMPAIGN IN THE SHENANDOAH VALLEY–CAPTURE OF THE WELDON
SHERIDAN’S ADVANCE–VISIT TO SHERIDAN–SHERIDAN’S VICTORY IN THE
SHENANDOAH–SHERIDAN’S RIDE TO WINCHESTER–CLOSE OF THE CAMPAIGN
FOR THE WINTER.
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