The Vicksburg Assaults, May 19 and 22, 1863

Osterhaus's view of his objective: the Square Fort (later named Fort Garrott), at the southern end of the Union line. A series of gullies led to the base of the rampart, providing little cover for the assaulting troops.

Square Fort: present day
Square Fort present day. In 1863, the approach ravines looked more like the photo below.
ravines

The ravines provided little cover against enfilading fire from both sides by the defenders, Stephen D. Lee’s brigade.


Blasted

Col. James Keigwin’s view from the left side approach to the fort. There was a deep ditch and stout abatis at the base of the rampart, Confederate rifle pits along the heights on both sides.


ridge

Defenders could pick off Keigwin’s brigade as they swarmed the top of the ridge. They were pinned down in the ravines, where they hunkered until nightfall.


blasted

The 7th Kentucky got blasted back behind the near ridge on the right.


Railroad

Lee‘s defenders in the fort had a clear shot at soldiers like the figure in red. Osterhaus’s observation point was the tree line of Two Mile Ridge, ile Ridge, rear. His gun emplacements were to the left rear of this shot.

To the north of Square Fort was the Railroad Redoubt, along with the nearby 2nd Texas Lunette the objective of Eugene Carr’s division. In the assault of May 22, Carr's single division sustained almost as many casualties as either of the other entire Union corps in this battle.



That’s the Southern Railroad bed to the right rear, Confederate redoubt walls barely visible atop the hill. The foreground was a deadly killing field for Carr’s division.

None of Grant’s corps succeeded in breaching the formidable Confederate defenses. Grant then opted to begin the siege of Vicksburg that would end in Pemberton’s surrender on July 4, 1863.


 
opy; 2009-2019 Mary B. Townsend unless otherwise specified.

 
opy; 2009-2019 Mary B. Townsend unless otherwise specified.

 
B. Townsend unless otherwise specified.

 
opy; 2009-2019 Mary B. Townsend unless otherwise specified.