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Toward evening, on the 7th, the curiosity of the Rebels to learn what was going on, became so great, that one of their officers called out to a Union officer, asking, “ What are you making all that noise about?" The answer was, “ We have taken Vicksburg."
The Rebel officer said he did not believe it, and on being asked what would convince him of its truth, he replied, “Nothing but a copy of the dispatch, or some reliable authority.”
The Union officer then told him he would procure a copy of General Grant's official dispatch, and pass it over the parapet to him. The Rebel said if he would do so, and vouch for its genuineness, on his honor as a gentleman, and a soldier, he would be convinced.
The Union officer at once procured a copy of the dispatch, and taking it to the enemy's breatsworks, gave it to the officer with whom he had been conversing, and at the same time assured him, on the honor of a soldier, that the dispatch was genuine, and that he had copied it with his own hand.
The Rebel having read it, said he was satisfied of its truthfulness, and that he thought it useless for Port Hudson longer to attempt to hold out. Things remained in the same position as previous to the interview, until two o'clock the next morning, when a parley was sounded from the Rebel works, and an officer came out, with a dispatch from the Rebel General Gardner, asking on what terms a surrender would be accepted.
As soon as the message could be conveyed to General Banks, an answer was returned, in effect, that only an unconditional surrender would be accepted.
General Gardner accepted the terms, and asked a few hours to make the necessary arrangements. He was given twenty-four hours, but did not take that length of time. At twelve. M., on the 8th of July, our forces entered Port Hudson, and became the masters of that strong-hold.
The Rebels were all drawn up in line of battle, numbering about four thousand men fit for duty, with their arms stacked in front of them, and surrendered ; and being in a suffering condition for want of food, were promptly fed from the commissariat of our army.
In addition to the number aforesaid, there were about fifteen hundred sick and wounded men-about five hundred of the latter. Their wounds were, generally, very severe--in the head, by the bullets of our sharpshooters.
Our batteries had done a great deal of damage, having destroyed an immense amount of stores. The Rebel sick had suffered terribly, from their almost total destitution of medical stores.
The United States flag was run up at nine o'clock, on Thursday morning, the 9th of July, and was saluted by the Hartford as she passed. There was a good supply of ammunition in the fort, all of which fell into our hands. This was the fifth day after the surrender of Vicksburg.
There had been much toil, privation, and suffering on both sides; but the justice of our cause had in. spired our troops with a determined, persevering energy, and indomitable bravery, that could not fail. under skillful and courageous leaders, of triumphant success and ultimate victory.
“And conquer we must, for our cause it is just,
MIDNIGHT CHARGE OF THE MULE BRIGADE UP LOOKOUT
WHILE General Hooker's army was moving up Lookout Valley, from some unknown cause a stampede among the mules occurred, which is worth relating, as it was an incident that afforded much merriment at the expense of the Rebels. It was in the dead of the night, when both armies were resting from the fatigues of the previous day, and the sentinel's tread was the only sound that disturbed the universal quiet.
Rushing from the wagons, to the number of about thirty, the mules made for the enemy's lines like frightened sheep. The drivers were awakened by the noise just in time to witness the disappearance of the animals through our advanced pickets. The enemy's pickets were not caught napping.
Hearing the mule brigade tearing across the valley, they mistook them for Yankee cavalry, discharged their muskets at the supposed “Yanks,” and fell back upon a battalion, stationed a little in the rear of them, with the cry that the enemy were upon them. The battalion taking the alarm, sprang to arms, only in time to hear the sound of the frightened mules, whose race was not checked by the volley from the pickets.
They retreated, also, a short distance, to a point where a whole Rebel brigade had stacked their arms, and were calmly dreaming of home and battle scenes. In rushed the battalion, more dead than alive from fright, with the exclamation—"Hooker has surprised us! his cavalry is upon us!" The valiant sons of Mars did not wait to gather up their blankets or guns, but made the fastest pedestrian time on record back to the main force; leaving upon the field, for the mule brigade, over one thousand stand of arms, among which, were three hundred new Enfield rifles, blankets, small arms, knapsacks, &c.
Meantime our teamsters had given the alarm, and a force was sent out for the recovery of the mules, and in a few hours, the expedition, inaugurated by the mules, returned to our lines with the valuable spoils. This is no fancy sketch; its correctness is vouched for by a member of General Thomas' staff, who was present when the expedition returned.
It will be recollected that in his report of Hooker's victory, General Thomas stated that 1,500 stands of arms were captured. Readers were, no doubt, generally at a loss to discover by what process more arms were taken than prisoners. In the midnight charge of the mule brigade, they may find a solution of the problem. Through its aid a large amount of valuable stores and arms were secured, and General Hooker was enabled to push his advance much nearer the point of ground contended for. All will agree that the charge of the mule brigade is worthy of a place in history.
STORY OF GENERAL SIGEL.
On the return of General Fremont's army from Southwestern Missouri, Sigel commanded the Division that came by Lebanon to Rolla. A few miles north of Leba
non the army encamped for the night, on the farm of a man who was in sympathy with the Rebellion, and his fence-rails were all burned for fire-wood, and his farm stripped of whatever was useful and necessary to subsist the troops and horses of the train.
In the morning the farmer came with a large bill of damages, and asked for payment. The Quartermaster came to General Sigel to know what should be done about it. Colonel Warmoth was present, and the General asked him whether the man was a loyal citizen. The Colonel replied that he was a conditional Union man at first, but that he had afterward sympathized with the Rebellion.
Turning to the Quartermaster-General, Sigel then replied—“Mr. Quartermaster, then you sympathize with the Government.” It is hardly necessary to add, that the Secesh farmer did not obtain what he came for.
GENERAL ORDER-A HEROINE.
Headquarters, District of Central Missouri,
} GENERAL ORDERS NO. 42. On the night of the 6th instant, a party of bushwhackers, some three in number, visited the house of a Mr. Schwarltz, about twelve miles from Jefferson City, Cole County, and on demanding admittance, were refused by Miss Schwarltz, a young lady of fifteen. They replied that they would come in, at the same time trying to break down the door.
While this was going on, the other inmates of the