Artillery used the crest of this ridge throughout the battle.
From here Confederate guns commanded the Raymond Road,
preventing a Union advance from the right. Late in the afternoon,
the Confederates deployed closer to Bakers Creek, and Union
artillery moved up and took this position, aiming west.
One of the two Union artillery units in the Coker House yard
was the Chicago Mercantile Battery, an elite unit sponsored by
Chicago businessmen. Among the members, six received the
Medal of Honor for their actions during the second assault on
Vicksburg on May 22, six days after the Battle of Champion Hill.
"I took four guns up the road... We passed the line of
infantry, who were lying down on either side of the road
and went into battery on the left in front of a planter's
[Coker's] house, which set back from the road about 300
feet. On the next ridge, which was 330 yards from us, the
rebel batteries and infantry were posted. Their batteries
were plowing the ground around us. We unlimbered and
ran the guns by hand nearly to the top of the ridge so as
to not expose the horses."
Capt. Pat White, Chicago Mercantile Battery
The Chicago Mercantile Battery was organized in August
1862, and most recruits were "well-born, well-bred, well-educatėd...
were about to enter Harvard, Tufts, or Yale, and all were
connected with good families.... We shall not see them all again."
Mary Livermore, from Chicago's Battery Boys
by Richard Brady Williams
Bottom middle: Typical 3-inch ordnance crew and a six-pounder field cannon, both of which had
been supplied by the Chicago Mercantile
Bottom right: Flag of Company G, 1st Mississippi Light Artillery
which engaged the Chicago Mercantile Battery.