Over the last several months, Grant had tried many strategies to try to capture Vicksburg. But at every turn he had been rebuffed by the Confederates or the nature of the difficult terrain of the area. But 150 years ago he decided to abandon his efforts to capture Vicksburg by moving around it through the bayous and swamps, and instead to try to run the batteries, and land below the fortress where the terrain would be less formidable. Although the ground would be easier for operations, the army would have to run much peril to get there. They would need transports to cross the river, and these would have to run by the formidable batteries on the bluff at Vicksburg. The transports were made of wood, and would be very vulnerable to the Union shot. It was a bold and risky plan, but Grant believed it would give him the best chances to capture Vicksburg.