April 8th, after a siege of thirteen days, a general bombardment was commenced, the besiegers having advanced steadily in spite of the heroic resistance of the garrison, whose lines were becoming painfully thin. Finally, after 300 yards of the left line had been broken and 350 prisoners taken, it was decided to evacuate the fort. Lieutenants Clark and Holtzclaw, with desperate bravery, held the enemy in check while the garrison evacuated the fort The first was killed, the second dangerously wounded.
Many of the soldiers marched through the mire to Fort Blakely and some to Mobile. The siege of Blakely was then progressing, and though the fort was defended with the most desperate valor, the brave garrison were finally compelled to yield after a hand-to-hand encounter with overwhelming numbers. General Maury, with about 4,500 men, retired to Meridian, and the Federals entered Mobile without further opposition.
While these operations were going on in south Alabama, General Wilson was on his famous raid from Gravelly Springs, Lauderdale county, to Selma. He had three divisions, commanded, respectively, by Generals McCook, Long and Upton. These three divisions were sent by different routes, meeting at the ford of the Black Warrior. They destroyed much valuable property and were opposed at various points by Roddey's and Crossland's brigades under Gen. Dan Adams, and by Forrest's troops, but nowhere could troops be massed in sufficient force to repulse the invaders. Selma, the most important depot of the Southwest, containing an arsenal and foundry, was besieged and taken, and given over to plunder, under orders to destroy everything which could benefit the Confederate cause. General Wilson proceeded to Montgomery, which he occupied April 12th, and then resumed his march into Georgia.
Meanwhile General Croxton marched toward Tuscaloosa, and twenty miles above the city was attacked by