Wednesday, March 17, 2010

From Cairo

The steamer Belle of Memphis has arrived from the Tennessee river, bringing very important intelligence from Pittsburg. She left there at 5 o’clock Thursday morning, and upon reaching Savannah her passengers heard heavy firing in the direction of Pittsburg. The cannonading was brisk and gradually grew heavier, being heard for miles this side of Savannah.

The belief that a general engagement was brought on is strengthened by the fact that on Wednesday significant preparations were made by Halleck for an attack.

The rain that we had here since Monday did not reach Pittsburg, and the roads were fast improving. A hot sun was drying up the mud and on Wednesday the roads were quite favorable for an advance movement.

Persons who left on Thursday morning, report that a skirmish occurred the day before; that four companies of Michigan cavalry, having been ordered out on a reconnoissance towards the enemy’s lines, were scouring the country, when they met a superior mounted force of the enemy, whom they repulsed with little loss.

The Memphis on her way down the river was fired into 35 miles this side of Pittsburg by a small guerilla force posted behind three houses on the river bank. A number of shots were fired, one of them killing a negro boy who was standing near the pilot house. The woods along the Tennessee are infested by a guerilla band who practice firing on the steamers as they pass by. After firing on the Memphis they burned the houses before alluded to and decamped.

Gen. Strong, on receiving this information, advised Gen. Halleck of what had transpired, so that measures might be taken for putting a stop to further proceedings of this character.

The gunboats on the Tennessee had effected a passage over the Muscle Shoals, near Florence, and had penetrated as far as Huntsville, Ala., were they captured a quantity of commissary stores belonging to the rebels.

Times’ Dispatch.

The steamer Lady Tyler, formerly the Alfred Robb, Captured from the rebels, arrived from the upper Tennessee this morning and reports that the heavy firing proceeded from a short skirmish with the enemy yesterday morning. No further particulars.

The steamer McGill left Pittsburg at 5 o’clock yesterday morning, and had heard nothing of it. The steamer Emma, left the landing at four p. m. yesterday and says that up to that hour not a shot was fired.

Col. Steadman, of an Alabama regiment, at New Madrid, arrived here on his parole, to report himself at St. Louis. He expresses the utmost faith in the success of the rebellion.

– Published in The Davenport Daily Gazette, Davenport, Iowa, Monday Morning, April 28, 1862, p. 1

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