The previous day the Federals had made several attacks, but in the end they were all unsuccessful. But in one attack Grant saw an opportunity. Emory Upton had been able to secure a foothold on the Confederate line, before being driven back because of lack of support. “A brigade today,” said Grant, “will try a corps tomorrow.” The day was spent planning an assault on the Mule Shoe, which would be made the next day.
On this day Grant also wrote to Edwin Stanton, Secretary of War, to update him on the progress of the campaign:
We have now entered the sixth day of very hard fighting. The result to this time is much in our favor. Our losses have been heavy as well as those of the enemy. I think the loss of the enemy must be greater. … I propose to fight it out on this line if it takes all summer.
This line, “I propose to fight it out on this line if it takes all summer,” became well known throughout the country as a slogan for the campaign. Grant would not retreat like other commanders of the army had done, he would fight it out to the bitter end.