March 21st 1863.
U. S. NAVY,
Hearing nothing from Admiral Porter I have determined to send you a barge of coal from here. The barge will be cast adrift from the upper end of the Canal at 10 O'clock to-night Troops on the opposite side of the point will be on the lookout and should the barge run into the eddy will start it adrift again.
Admiral Porter is now in Deer Creek, or possibly in the Yazoo, below Yazoo city. I hope to hear from him this evening. As soon as I do I will prepare dispatches for Gen. Banks and forward them to you.
I have sent a force into the Yazoo river by the way of Yazoo Pass. Hearing of this force at Greenwood Miss. and learning that the enemy were detaching a large force from Vicksburg to go and meet them determined Admiral Porter to attempt to get gunboats in the rear of the enemy. I hope to hear of the success of this enterpris soon.
I am Admiral
Your obt. svt.
U. S. GRANT.
ALS, DNA, RG 45, Area 5. O.R., I, xxiv, part 3, 123; O. R. (Navy), I, xx, 7. An undated letter from Rear Admiral David G. Farragut to USG was received on March 20, 1863. "I herewith transmit to you, by the hand of my Secretary, a despatch from Maj : Gen'l N. P. Banks; it was sent up to me the evening I was to pass the Batteries at Port Hudson. Having learnt that the Enemy had the Red River trade open to Vicksburg and Port Hudson, and that two of the Gun Boats of the upper Fleet had been captured, I determined to pass up, and if possible, recapture the boats and stop the Red River trade, and this I can do most effectually, if I can obtain from Rear Admiral Porter or yourself, coal for my vessels;—by my trip up the River I have become perfectly acquainted with the Enemy's forces on the Banks and his boats in the adjacent waters. I shall be most happy to avail myself