Map 2: Port Hudson and its defenses.
This topographical map of Port Hudson and its vicinity shows the earthworks and other defenses in existence at the time of its fall. The earthworks were dirt fortifications built by the Confederates, behind which they placed artillery and soldiers with rifles. Keep in mind that Port Hudson sat on an 80-foot bluff. Some of the ravines surrounding the Confederate defenses were as deep as 60 feet, and many streams and rivers protruded from the Mississippi all around the area. The bend in the river near Port Hudson made navigation both downstream and upstream a slow, painstaking process.
Questions for Map 2
1. What geographical features made Port Hudson a good place to establish a fort?
2. How do you think the Confederate army decided where to build its earthworks? Do they seem to have a strong defensive position?
* The map on the screen has a resolution of 72 dots per inch (dpi), and therefore will print poorly. You can obtain a high quality version of the map, but be aware that the file may take as much as 60 seconds to load with a 28.8K modem.