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Page:A narrative of service with the Third Wisconsin Infantry.djvu/173

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BEFORE SAVANNAH

had tried to capture the day before, afforded the men an abundance of fun.

On the 10th we marched to within about four miles of Savannah, where we were stopped by the entrenched enemy. While we were getting into line, a detail of foragers, gathered along the banks of the Savannah River, spied a small steamer coming up the stream from the city. They hid themselves along the shore until the boat was directly opposite, when they opened a musketry fire and compelled the craft to surrender. It proved to be a Confederate dispatch boat on its way up the river to warn the fleet that Sherman and his army had arrived. The fleet did not receive the warning, and interesting developments followed. The men who had captured the prize did not know its value, and after stripping it of everything they wanted, set fire to it.

The country between our lines and those of the enemy was a big rice plantation, which overflowed at every high tide, and which could be kept under water by closing the flood-gates. The only means of access to the city were the narrow causeways built through this swamp. At the point where we

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