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CONTENTS I. Our Party set out for Vicksburg-The Ride and Scenery Scenes during the first Bombardment-View of the City and River-Opening of a Battery-The Enemy, 9 II. At Night the Signal Gun sounds-The Gunboats are coming down-The Town Awake-Shell Music-The Boats near us Rapid-Descent to the Cave-They have passed safely-Why the Confederate Guns do not fire-The Burning Transport, 15 III. Masked Battery on the Opposite Shore-Taking the Cars-Fright of the Negro Porters-Major Watts's Party-Stampede of Ladies, 20 IV. Jackson threatened Colonel Grierson General Pemberton departs-My Mind is made up to go also-Ride on the Cars-Vicksburg again, 25 V. To Vicksburg again-Aspirations-Troops passing to Black River-General Pemberton orders all Non-Combatants to leave the City, 29 VI. Rumors of the Federal Advance on Black River-Gun boats on the River-Cannonading and Fire at Warrenton-General Pemberton's Forces engaged at Black River, 35 VII. Sunday, the 17th-After Church-The Demoralized Army-Soldiers Stories, .... .40 VIII. Fresh Troops from Warrenton for the Intrenchments-"We'll Protect You"-Fears, 46 IX. The Ball in Motion-View from the Court House-Federal Prisoners sent across the River-Movements of Gunboats, 49 X. Groundless Fear of an Attack by Gunboats-Shells fall-The Bombardment begins-Cave Shelter-Garrison Force-Cave and Cave Life, 55 XI. Buried Alive-House Breaking-Appearance of Shell at Night-Under the Root of a Fig Tree, 63 XII. Fire at Night-A Narrow Escape-Moonlight Shells from the Battle Field Employment and Traffic, 69 XIII. Shells from the Rear of the City-Providential Deliverance-Pantomime Pea Meal-Hospital Accident, 73 XIV. Dogs-Horses-Descent of a Shell through a Cave-A Mother'sCries-Deserted Homes-Silence, 78 XY. An Excitement-Sinking of the Cincinnati Sky-Parlor Hill-Moving Prospects, 84 XVI. Fall of a Shell at the Corner of my Cave-Music-Casualties of the Day, 89 XVII. Ride to the Fortifications-Number of Caves along the Road-Appearance of the New Home-Change of Missiles, 94 XVIII. Morning Charge of General Burbridge-Horrors of War-An Important Discovery, 99 XIX. An Acceptable Present-Hunger-Half Rations-In the Rifle Pits, 105 XX. A Rainy Morning-A Waterspout-Dismal Experience-Brighter Prospects-An Unfortunate Sleeper, 109 XXI. Weary-The Couriers from General Johnston-Dangerous Pasturage-Mule Meat-Local Songs-Missed by a Minie Ball, 114 XXII. A Wounded Horse-Shrapnell Shells-Charge on the Intrenchments-Fearful Firing, 122 XXIII. An Unhappy Accident-The Unfortunate Ladies of Vicksburg-Approach of Mortar Shells near the In trenchments, 128 XXIV. Death of a Faithful Servant-Blowing up of a Fort-Loss of Prominent Officers-Surrender of Vicksburg, 135 XXV. A Fright-George my Protector-A Polite Soldier gets the Tent Fly, 143 LETTERS OF TRIAL AND TRAVEL, 147From the Back Cover:
This book is a rare and affecting personal narrative of the Civil War from a Southern woman. At the age of twenty-seven, along with her two-year old daughter and her husband, Confederate Major James M. Loughborough, Mary Ann Webster Loughbrough, arrived in Vicksburg. Shortly thereafter, the Union armies began a month and a half seige against the fortification in order to gain control of the Mississippi River. As she and her daughter took refuge in dugout caves in the hills above Vicksburg, Mary Loughborough recorded her daily life. Her personal account of the events of 1863 vividly documents some of the many extraordinary experiences of ordinary people on American soil during the Civil War. Many consider General U.S. Grant's Siege at Vicksburg (May 25-July 4, 1863), along with Robert E. Lee's defeat at Gettysburg on July 3, 1863, the turning point of the Civil War. During the siege, Union gunboats lobbed over 22,000 shells into the town. As the barrages continued, citizens of Vicksburg, Mississippi sought refuge on a ridge located between the main town and the rebel defense line, where over 500 caves were dug into the yellow clay hills of Vicksburg. Whether houses were structurally sound or not, it was deemed safer to occupy these dugouts. People did their best to make them comfortable, with rugs, furniture, and pictures. They tried to time their movements and foraging with the rhythm of the cannonade, sometimes unsuccessfully. Because of these dugouts or caves, the Union soldiers gave the town the nickname of "Prairie Dog Village." Despite the ferocity of the Union fire against the town, fewer than a dozen civilians were known to have been killed during the entire siege. MaryLoughbrough tells the story of the Siege from the citizen's point of view.
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