This Week in the American Civil War: March 1-7, 1865

MN150Logo_OL_FNLInformation courtesy of the

Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force

(www.mncivilwar150.com and “Minnesota Civil War 150” on Facebook)

 

Major Highlights for the Week

Wednesday March 1, 1865

Federal Major General Phil Sheridan’s cavalry skirmished with a small force of Confederate Lieutenant General Jubal Early’s troops at Mount Crawford, Virginia.

In South Carolina, Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s troops continued to push to the north.

The Thirteenth Amendment was still a prime subject in the North. Wisconsin ratified the amendment but New Jersey rejected the measure to abolish slavery constitutionally.

Thursday March 2, 1865

ENGAGEMENT AT WAYNESBOROUGH, VIRGINIA

The remnants of Confederate Lieutenant General Jubal Early’s once powerful army were dispersed by Federal cavalry under Brigadier General George A. Custer at Waynesborough, Virginia. Custer led the assault with nearly 5,000 men. The Confederate troops on the left gave way and could not be rallied. Custer defeated two Confederate infantry brigades and a small cavalry force of less than 2,000 troopers. Though not a major battle, Waynesborough was the last in a long line of battles in the Shenandoah Valley.

Skirmishing occurred at Thompson’s Creek, South Carolina and at Athens, Tennessee.

Friday March 3, 1865

The 38th Congress of the United States held its last regular session, adjourning around 8 a.m. the next morning. President Abraham Lincoln and Cabinet members went to the Capitol in the evening to consider last minute bills including the act establishing a Bureau for the Relief of Freedman and Refugees. The Freedman’s Bureau would supervise and manage all abandoned lands and have control of all subjects relating to refugees and freedmen from Confederate states. It would provide temporary subsistence, clothing and fuel as well as assigning land. Another act set up the Freedmen’s Savings and Trust Company.

Lincoln wrote a message directing Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant that removed any political questions out of the general’s hands. It laid the policy for the generals in the surrenders that were forthcoming, though the message was sent only to Grant and not to Sherman.      

Saturday March 4, 1865

LINCOLN’S SECOND INAUGURATION

Before the Inauguration, Governor Andrew Johnson of Tennessee took the oath of office thereby succeeding Hannibal Hamlin as Vice President of the United States. Having taken too much whiskey as a medicine, since he was taken ill, Vice President Johnson gave a rambling, incoherent address which shocked many and was an inauspicious beginning to the day. Then President Abraham Lincoln was inaugurated for the second time and gave his famous address which sought a full reconciliation.

The U.S. Senate met in special session to consider appointments and other business.

That evening, a public reception was held in which it is estimated that the president shook hands with 6,000 people.

William G. Brownlow was elected Governor of Tennessee to replace the new Vice President.

Skirmishing occurred at Phillips Cross Roads, North Carolina and at East River Bridge, Florida. The U.S. transport Thorn was destroyed by a torpedo in the Cape Fear River, North Carolina, as the Navy was busy trying to clear coastal waters of torpedoes or mines.

Sunday March 5, 1865

    Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s army was in and around Cheraw, South Carolina with only a minor skirmish being the only fighting. They were preparing to enter North Carolina in the direction of Fayetteville.

President Abraham Lincoln asked Hugh McCulloch, Comptroller of the Currency, to be the new Treasury Secretary as William Fessenden had resigned after being reelected to the U.S. Senate from Maine.

Monday March 6, 1865

Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston assumed command of all troops in the Department of North Carolina in addition to his other tasks. He now led all Confederate troops in the Carolinas and south of Petersburg, Virginia. Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s forces crossed the Pee Dee River and the entire army was now enroute to Fayetteville, North Carolina. The only skirmishing of the day occurred at Natural Bridge, Florida.

President Abraham Lincoln formally appointed Hugh McCulloch as Secretary of the Treasury in place of William Fessenden. In the evening, the gala inaugural ball was held at the Patent Office.

Tuesday March 7, 1865

In North Carolina, it was found that after the capture of Wilmington, New Berne was even a better supply base and a large force under Major General Jacob D. Cox was established there.

Federal troops skirmished with Indians eighty miles west of Fort Larned, Kansas. Fighting also occurred at Elyton, Alabama and Flint Hill, Virginia.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of March 1-7, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – Participated the Battle of Hatcher’s Run and were in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia until April 2, 1865.

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march through the Carolinas until March 11, 1865.

3rd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Duvall’s Bluff, Arkansas until May 13, 1865.

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Cheraw, South Carolina until March 19, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 7, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Campaign against Mobile, Alabama until March 26, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – En route to Kinston and Goldsborough, North Carolina until March 21, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

11th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Assigned to duty guarding the line of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad from Nashville to the Kentucky line. Companies E, G, and I were at Gallatin, Tennessee. Company A was at Buck Lodge. Company B at Edgefield Junction. Company C at Richland. Company D at Sandersville. Company H was at Mitchellsville. The location of companies F and K are unknown at this time. The regiment remained on duty at these locations until June 25, 1865.

2nd Regiment Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling, until November 17, 1865.

Brackett’s Battalion of Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling until May 1866.

Hatch’s Independent Battalion of Cavalry – Companies A, B, C and D moved to Fort Abercrombie. Companies A and B assigned to garrison at Fort Abercrombie.  Company C assigned to garrison at Alexandria and Pomme de Terre. Company D on patrol duty from Fort Abercrombie to Pembina.  Companies E and F on frontier duty. The battalion would remain in these duty locations for the duration of the war – until April 26, 1866.

1st Minnesota Heavy Artillery Battery – On garrison duty at Chattanooga, Tennessee until September 27, 1865.

1st Minnesota Light Artillery Battery – On duty at Cheraw, South Carolina until March 20, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty as infantry at Fort Irwin, Defenses of Chattanooga until March 30, 1865.

3rd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – Various sections on duty at Fort Ridgely, Fort Ripley and Fort Sisseton until May 1865.

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I - Attached to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry at Petersburg, Virginia until March 19, 1865. 

Inactive units: 

1st Regiment Minnesota Cavalry “Mounted Rangers” – Formally mustered out of service on December 7, 1863. Inactive.  

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Mustered out of Federal service on April 29, 1864. Inactive. 

2nd United States Sharpshooters, Company A – Transferred to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry on February 20, 1865 at Petersburg, Virginia for duration of service.

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This Week in the American Civil War: February 22-28, 1865

MN150Logo_OL_FNLInformation courtesy of the

Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force

(www.mncivilwar150.com and “Minnesota Civil War 150” on Facebook)

 

Major Highlights for the Week

Wednesday February 22, 1865

The Federals entered Wilmington, North Carolina without opposition. The last major port of the South was now lost as Confederate General Braxton Bragg had withdrawn the last of his troops before daylight broke. The Confederates were able to remove their most important stores with the help of the Weldon and Wilmington Railroad, but the rest was destroyed. The two-pronged Federal attack under Major General John Schofield was a success.

Official orders from Confederate General-in-Chief Robert E. Lee assigned General Joseph E. Johnston to the Department of South Carolina, Georgia and Florida, and the Department of Tennessee and Georgia. Johnston was ordered to concentrate all available forces, especially those coming in from the West.

Tennessee voters approved the new state constitution which included the abolition of slavery and abrogation of all Confederate debts. However, Kentucky rejected the Thirteenth Amendment which abolished slavery.

Thursday February 23, 1865

MINNESOTA RATIFIES 13th AMENDMENT

Federal troops at Wilmington, North Carolina consolidated their gains while the advance of Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s troops crossed the Catawba River in South Carolina, getting closer to the North Carolina line. A light skirmish occurred near Camden, South Carolina as heavy rains moved in halting the advance.

Minnesota ratified the Thirteenth Amendment.

Friday February 24, 1865

The heavy rain holding up Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s advance also hindered the ability for the Confederates to concentrate their forces.

Skirmishing occurred at Camden, South Carolina and at Switzler’s Mill, Missouri.      

Saturday February 25, 1865

Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston assumed command of the Army of Tennessee, now in the Carolinas, and all troops in the Department of South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. Johnston pointed out to General Robert E. Lee, the Confederacy’s General-in-Chief, the difficulties of concentrating his Confederates and stress that he had between 20,000 and 25,000 men to oppose the Federal army under Major General William T. Sherman coming north from South Carolina.

Skirmishing occurred at West’s Cross Roads, South Carolina; and at Piketon, Kentucky.

Sunday February 26, 1865

    Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s advance troops reached Hanging Rock, South Carolina, but other movements were slowed by the heavy rains. Skirmishing occurred at Lynch’s Creek and near Stroud’s Mill, South Carolina.

Monday February 27, 1865

Federal Major General Phil Sheridan’s force of ten thousand cavalry left Winchester, Virginia and headed south to destroy the Virginia Central Railroad and James River Canal, under orders from Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant. They were then to take Lynchburg and then either join Major General William T. Sherman in North Carolina or return to Winchester, Virginia. Confederate Lieutenant General Jubal Early only had two weakened brigades and a few pieces of artillery to halt Sheridan’s movements.

Minor skirmishing occurred at Mount Elon and Cloud’s House, South Carolina; Sturgeon, Missouri; and at Spring Place, Georgia.

Tuesday February 28, 1865

Skirmishes near Rocky Mount and Cheraw, South Carolina marked the march of Federal Major General William T. Sherman, while Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston was attempting to create a plan to oppose the Federal advance. As the month ended, the entire Confederate military position was quite precarious.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of February 22-28, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – Participated the Battle of Hatcher’s Run and were in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia until April 2, 1865.       

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march through the Carolinas until March 11, 1865.

3rd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Duvall’s Bluff, Arkansas until May 13, 1865.

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march through the Carolinas until March 3, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 7, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 5, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – En route to Kinston and Goldsborough, North Carolina until March 21, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

11th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Assigned to duty guarding the line of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad from Nashville to the Kentucky line. Companies E, G, and I were at Gallatin, Tennessee. Company A was at Buck Lodge. Company B at Edgefield Junction. Company C at Richland. Company D at Sandersville. Company H was at Mitchellsville. The location of companies F and K are unknown at this time. The regiment remained on duty at these locations until June 25, 1865.

2nd Regiment Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling, until November 17, 1865.

Brackett’s Battalion of Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling until May 1866.

Hatch’s Independent Battalion of Cavalry – Companies A, B, C and D moved to Fort Abercrombie. Companies A and B assigned to garrison at Fort Abercrombie.  Company C assigned to garrison at Alexandria and Pomme de Terre. Company D on patrol duty from Fort Abercrombie to Pembina.  Companies E and F on frontier duty. The battalion would remain in these duty locations for the duration of the war – until April 26, 1866.

1st Minnesota Heavy Artillery Battery – On garrison duty at Chattanooga, Tennessee until September 27, 1865.

1st Minnesota Light Artillery Battery – On the march through the Carolinas until March 3, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty as infantry at Fort Irwin, Defenses of Chattanooga until March 30, 1865.

3rd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – Various sections on duty at Fort Ridgely, Fort Ripley and Fort Sisseton until May 1865.

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I - Attached to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry at Petersburg, Virginia until March 19, 1865. 

Inactive units: 

1st Regiment Minnesota Cavalry “Mounted Rangers” – Formally mustered out of service on December 7, 1863. Inactive.  

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Mustered out of Federal service on April 29, 1864. Inactive. 

2nd United States Sharpshooters, Company A – Transferred to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry on February 20, 1865 at Petersburg, Virginia for duration of service.

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This Week in the American Civil War: February 15-21, 1865

MN150Logo_OL_FNLInformation courtesy of the

Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force

(www.mncivilwar150.com and “Minnesota Civil War 150” on Facebook)

 

Major Highlights for the Week

Wednesday February 15, 1865

Fairly heavy skirmishing occurred at Congaree Creek, Savannah Creek, Bates’s Ferry, Red Bank Creek and Two League Cross Roads, South Carolina as the Federal army marched toward Columbia. They made rapid progress despite opposition from Confederates, difficult swamps, mud, rivers, burned bridges and blocked roads.

Thursday February 16, 1865

Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s army arrived on the south bank of the Congaree River opposite Columbia, the capital of South Carolina. Some Federal shells were fired into the city towards the railroad depot, and Federal troops could see people, including a few Confederate cavalry, running through the streets in confusion. Confederate General P.G.T. Beauregard sent a telegram to General Robert E. Lee notifying the general-in-chief that Beauregard had to abandon the city because he did not have enough troop strength to hold it. By late afternoon, Beauregard and his troops evacuated the city.

Skirmishing took place at Bennett’s Bayou and Tolbert’s Mill, Arkansas; Gurley’s Tank, Alabama; and Cedar Keys, Florida. Confederates attacked the garrison at Athens and Sweet Water, Tennessee.

Friday February 17, 1865

The mayor of Columbia, South Carolina and a delegation of officials rode out in carriages to meet the Federal troops and surrender the city. As Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s army entered the capital, remnants of Confederate cavalry fled. The blue-clad troops were met by jubilant Federal prisoners and Negroes. In the new state Capitol building, boisterous Federal soldiers held a mock session of the “state legislature” after imbibing in confiscated liquor supplies. While Sherman and his officers took up headquarters in some of the elegant mansions of the tree-shaded rural capital, much of the city burned. The Federals blamed newly promoted Confederate Lieutenant General Wade Hampton and his cavalry for the destruction. Hampton’s troops set fire to cotton bales before evacuating the city. However, Confederates called it barbaric and blamed Sherman, making the burning of Columbia a symbol of the Federal invasion. Historians still have not discovered the true cause of the burning of Columbia a century-and-a-half later.      

Saturday February 18, 1865

As the city of Columbia, South Carolina was burning itself out, Federal Major General William T. Sherman added to its toll by ordering the destruction of railroad depots, supply houses and other public buildings that he deemed to be of military significance.

Federal naval units bombarded Fort Anderson on the Cape Fear River as the combined land and sea forces began their campaign for Wilmington, North Carolina. There was also skirmishing at Fort Anderson and Orton Pond, as Federals probed the land defenses below Wilmington.

A scheduled vote on the recognition and admission of the restored state of Louisiana to Congress was postponed in the U.S. Senate.

Sunday February 19, 1865

    Federal Major General Jacob D. Cox’s army was on its way to outflank Fort Anderson and the Confederate defense line on the west side of the Cape Fear River near Wilmington, North Carolina. By evening, the Federals had marched about fifteen miles in a detour around the enemy works and fought off several skirmishes, including one at Town Creek. In front of Fort Anderson, the infantry had demonstrated while the Federal navy cannonaded the fort. During the night, the Confederates pulled out towards Wilmington and on the east side of the Cape Fear River.

At Columbia, South Carolina, Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s men continued to destroy the arsenal, railroad installations, machine shops, foundries, and railroad lines.

Monday February 20, 1865

Federal troops marched rapidly towards Wilmington, North Carolina. They had outflanked the defenders on the west bank of the Cape Fear River, but still faced opposition on the east bank.

Skirmishing occurred at Fort Myers, Florida and at Centre Creek, Missouri.

The Confederate House of Representatives authorized the use of slaves as soldiers after a lengthy debate.

Tuesday February 21, 1865

The Federal forces in North Carolina were close to Wilmington, with shaky resistance in front of them. Columns of smoke rose in the city as the Confederates destroyed their stores. Confederate General Braxton Bragg arrived and ordered the evacuation in order to preserve what force he had left in the city.

Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s advance forces were on the march from Columbia through the northern part of South Carolina.

The Confederate Senate postponed debate on the House bill authorizing the use of slaves as soldiers.

Confederate General Robert E. Lee ordered General Joseph E. Johnston to report for duty to replace General P.G.T. Beauregard in the Carolinas.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of February 15-21, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – Participated the Battle of Hatcher’s Run and were in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia until April 2, 1865.       

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march through the Carolinas until March 11, 1865.

3rd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Duvall’s Bluff, Arkansas until May 13, 1865.

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march through the Carolinas until March 3, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 7, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 5, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Washington, D.C. until February 21, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

11th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Assigned to duty guarding the line of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad from Nashville to the Kentucky line. Companies E, G, and I were at Gallatin, Tennessee. Company A was at Buck Lodge. Company B at Edgefield Junction. Company C at Richland. Company D at Sandersville. Company H was at Mitchellsville. The location of companies F and K are unknown at this time. The regiment remained on duty at these locations until June 25, 1865.

2nd Regiment Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling, until November 17, 1865.

Brackett’s Battalion of Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling until May 1866.

Hatch’s Independent Battalion of Cavalry – Companies A, B, C and D moved to Fort Abercrombie. Companies A and B assigned to garrison at Fort Abercrombie.  Company C assigned to garrison at Alexandria and Pomme de Terre. Company D on patrol duty from Fort Abercrombie to Pembina.  Companies E and F on frontier duty. The battalion would remain in these duty locations for the duration of the war – until April 26, 1866.

1st Minnesota Heavy Artillery Battery – On garrison duty at Chattanooga, Tennessee until September 27, 1865.

1st Minnesota Light Artillery Battery – On the march through the Carolinas until March 3, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty as infantry at Fort Irwin, Defenses of Chattanooga until March 30, 1865.

3rd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – Various sections on duty at Fort Ridgely, Fort Ripley and Fort Sisseton until May 1865.

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I - Attached to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry at Petersburg, Virginia until February 20, 1865. 

2nd United States Sharpshooters, Company A – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg until February 20, 1865.

Inactive units: 

1st Regiment Minnesota Cavalry “Mounted Rangers” – Formally mustered out of service on December 7, 1863. Inactive.  

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Mustered out of Federal service on April 29, 1864. Inactive.

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This Week in the American Civil War: February 8-14, 1865

MN150Logo_OL_FNLInformation courtesy of the

Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force

(www.mncivilwar150.com and “Minnesota Civil War 150” on Facebook)

 

Major Highlights for the Week

Wednesday February 8, 1865

The United States House of Representatives passed a joint resolution declaring that the states of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas and Tennessee were not entitled to representation in the Electoral College. President Abraham Lincoln signed the resolution but failed to offer an opinion on the matter and disclaimed any right to interfere in the counting of ballots.

Skirmishing occurred at Williston, White Pond and at Cannon’s Bridge in South Carolina; New Market and Bradfordsville, Kentucky; and near Rush Creek, Nebraska Territory.

Massachusetts and Pennsylvania became the next states to ratify the 13th Amendment.

Thursday February 9, 1865

Federal Major General Quincy A. Gillmore took command of the Department of the South, replacing Major General John G. Foster. Federal Major General John M. Schofield assumed command of the Department of North Carolina. Schofield’s 23rd Corps advance units arrived at Fort Fisher, North Carolina, to prepare an attack on Wilmington and eventual joining with Major General William T. Sherman in North Carolina.

Confederate General Robert E. Lee assumed his duties as General-in-Chief of the Confederate Armies and pledged to rely on the field commanders in the operation. He also proposed a pardon to deserters who reported back to the army within 30 days. Confederate President Jefferson Davis approved the measure.

Unionists in Virginia ratified the 13th Amendment.

Friday February 10, 1865

President Abraham Lincoln reported to the United States House of Representatives, a status on the Hampton Roads Conference.

Skirmishing occurred on James Island and at Johnson’s Station, South Carolina, as Confederates guarded against attack from both Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s forces and from the sea.

All Federal troops in the Departments of Kentucky and the Cumberland were declared subject to the orders of Major General George H. Thomas, except for posts protecting the Mississippi River.

Confederate Captain Raphael Semmes was named Rear Admiral, C.S.A., and put in command of the James River Squadron.

Ohio and Missouri ratified the 13th Amendment.      

Saturday February 11, 1865

Fighting took place at Aiken, Johnson’s Station, near Sugar Loaf, at Battery Simkins and around Orangeburg, South Carolina; Clear Creek and Pine Bluff, Arkansas; and at Williamsburg, Virginia.

Sunday February 12, 1865

    The electoral vote was taken in the United States House of Representatives and Abraham Lincoln was officially re-elected with 212 votes to 21 for George B. McClellan.

President Lincoln, meanwhile, was still concerned by reports that Missouri provost marshals were selling confiscated property.

Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s troops swept enemy opposition from the Orangeburg Bridge on the North Edisto River as the march continued through South Carolina. Other skirmishing occurred near Columbia and Macon, Missouri; Lewisburg, Arkansas; and Waterloo, Alabama.

Monday February 13, 1865

Prospects for success remained dim for Confederates in South Carolina as General P.G.T. Beauregard had only remnants of troops available to defend Augusta, Georgia.

In Richmond, Virginia and elsewhere throughout the South there was increasing insistence that General Joseph E. Johnston be put in overall command in the Carolinas, though General Robert E. Lee believed that continual command change was unwise, even though he personally had a good opinion of Johnston.

In London, Lord Russell protested to Federal commissioners against the St. Albans, Vermont, Raid of Oct. 19, 1864, its aftermath in Canada and general activity on the Great Lakes waterways.

Tuesday February 14, 1865

Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s troops pushed across the Congaree River and the army turned towards Columbia. Skirmishing flared at Wolf’s Plantation and Gunter’s Bridge on the North Edisto River, South Carolina.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of February 8-14, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – Participated the Battle of Hatcher’s Run and were in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia until April 2, 1865.    

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march through the Carolinas until March 11, 1865.

3rd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Duvall’s Bluff, Arkansas until May 13, 1865.

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march through the Carolinas until March 3, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 7, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 5, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Washington, D.C. until February 21, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

11th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Assigned to duty guarding the line of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad from Nashville to the Kentucky line. Companies E, G, and I were at Gallatin, Tennessee. Company A was at Buck Lodge. Company B at Edgefield Junction. Company C at Richland. Company D at Sandersville. Company H was at Mitchellsville. The location of companies F and K are unknown at this time. The regiment remained on duty at these locations until June 25, 1865.

2nd Regiment Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling, until November 17, 1865.

Brackett’s Battalion of Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling until May 1866.

Hatch’s Independent Battalion of Cavalry – Companies A, B, C and D moved to Fort Abercrombie. Companies A and B assigned to garrison at Fort Abercrombie.  Company C assigned to garrison at Alexandria and Pomme de Terre. Company D on patrol duty from Fort Abercrombie to Pembina.  Companies E and F on frontier duty. The battalion would remain in these duty locations for the duration of the war – until April 26, 1866.

1st Minnesota Heavy Artillery Battery – On garrison duty at Chattanooga, Tennessee until September 27, 1865.

1st Minnesota Light Artillery Battery – On the march through the Carolinas until March 3, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty as infantry at Fort Irwin, Defenses of Chattanooga until March 30, 1865.

3rd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – Various sections on duty at Fort Ridgely, Fort Ripley and Fort Sisseton until May 1865.

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I - Attached to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry at Petersburg, Virginia until February 20, 1865. 

2nd United States Sharpshooters, Company A – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg until February 20, 1865.

Inactive units: 

1st Regiment Minnesota Cavalry “Mounted Rangers” – Formally mustered out of service on December 7, 1863. Inactive.  

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Mustered out of Federal service on April 29, 1864. Inactive.

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This Week in the American Civil War: February 1-7, 1865

MN150Logo_OL_FNLInformation courtesy of the

Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force

(www.mncivilwar150.com and “Minnesota Civil War 150” on Facebook)

 

Major Highlights for the Week

Wednesday February 1, 1865

After two weeks of preliminary movements and extensive preparation, Federal Major General William T. Sherman actively began his march into South Carolina from Savannah, Georgia and Beaufort, South Carolina. The troops of the Fifteenth and Seventeenth Army Corps moved ahead despite felled trees and burned bridges. The well-trained pioneer battalions quickly cleared the way. Confederate cavalry attempted to hinder the advance forcing skirmishes at Hickory Hill and Whippy Swamp Creek, South Carolina.

Illinois became the first state to ratify the 13th Amendment, abolishing slavery. President Abraham Lincoln signed a resolution submitting the amendment to the states even though his signature was not required.

Confederate President Jefferson Davis reluctantly accepted the resignation of Secretary of War James A. Seddon. A Virginia delegation in the Confederate Congress even called for relieving all of the Confederate Cabinet, though Davis defended his right to choose his own advisors.

Thursday February 2, 1865

Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s right wing was on the Salkehatchie River in South Carolina. The rivers and swamps were as much obstacles to the Federal advance into South Carolina as the Confederate cavalry and other troops trying in vain to block their way. Severe skirmishing occurred at Lawtonville, Barker’s Mill on Whippy Swamp, Duck Branch near Loper’s Cross Roads, and Rivers’s and Broxton’s bridges on the Salkehatchie River.

Rhode Island and Michigan joined Illinois in ratifying the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which abolished slavery.

President Abraham Lincoln left Washington, D.C. for Hampton Roads, Virginia, where the three Confederate commissioners were already gathered. They were Vice President Alexander Stephens, Assistant Secreatry of War and former U.S. Supreme Court Justice John A. Campbell, and Senator R.M.T. Hunter. In the evening, Lincoln arrived at Fort Monroe and boarded the River Queen, where Secretary of State William H. Seward already had his headquarters.

Friday February 3, 1865

HAMPTON ROADS CONFERENCE

Five men sat in the salon of the River Queen in Hampton Roads off of Fort Monroe, Virginia, discussing the fates of the United States and Confederate States of America. On one side, President Abraham Lincoln and Secretary of State William H. Seward; the other side featured Vice President Alexander Stephens, R.M.T. Hunter of Virginia, and former U.S. Supreme Court Justice John A. Campbell. The terms of resolution by the United States were for unconditional submission. The Confederate commissioners reported back to President Jefferson Davis, effectively ending the only real effort at peace that was made before surrender occurred months later at a heavier price in dollars and men.

Maryland, New York and West Virginia ratified the 13th Amendment, bringing the total number of states to six.        

Saturday February 4, 1865

President Abraham Lincoln returned from the unsuccessful Hampton Roads conference and reported to the Cabinet. He again told Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant through Secretary of War Edwin Stanton that nothing should cause any change or delay of Grant’s military operations.

Skirmishing occurred at Angley’s Post Office and Buford’s Bridge in South Carolina.

Federal Major General John Pope assumed command of the Military Division of the Missouri.

Discouraged by Federal advances in South Carolina, Confederate President Jefferson Davis wrote to General P.G.T. Beauregard at Augusta, Georgia that things were worse than he expected and that Beauregard should take overall command in Georgia and concentrate as many troops as possible.

Sunday February 5, 1865

    Federal Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant ordered the Second and Fifth Corps, along with cavalry, towards the Boydton Plank Road and Hatcher’s Run in an attempt to extend the Federal lines south and west of Petersburg, Virginia, in order to weaken the already strained defensive positions of Confederate General Robert E. Lee.  The Confederates moved troops into the vicinity but could only do little against the stronger Federal infantry and cavalry units at Hatcher’s Run.

In South Carolina, skirmishing occurred at Duncanville and Combahee Ferry, as Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s four corps continued to cross the various streams and swamps of the southern part of the state.

In other areas, skirmishing occurred at Charles Town, West Virginia; Braddock’s Farm near Welaka, Florida; and McMinnville, Tennessee.

Monday February 6, 1865

Confederate President Jefferson Davis named Major General John C. Breckinridge as Confederate Secretary of War, replacing James A. Seddon. The Senate approved the appointment on the same day.

Confederate General Robert E. Lee received his orders to assume the duties as General-in-Chief of the Armies, as provided for by the Act of the Confederate Congress and approved by Davis. While important posts, these two appointments came too late in the war to have much of a  bearing on its outcome.

On the Petersburg, Virginia front, fighting at Hatcher’s Run increased. Confederate Brigadier General John Pegram, commanding a Confederate division, was killed while trying to halt the Federal advance.

Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s troops fought against Confederates trying to delay the advance at Fishburn’s Plantation near Lane’s Bridge on the Little Salkehatchie River, at Cowpen Ford, and at Barnwell, South Carolina.

Tuesday February 7, 1865

Two more states ratified the 13th Amendment, bringing the total to eight. Delaware voted on the measure but it failed to receive the necessary votes.

The fighting at Hatcher’s Run, Virginia ended with Federals abandoning the Boydton Plank Road but fortifying their new lines to Hatcher’s Run at the Vaughan Road Crossing, three miles below Burgess’s Mill. The 46,000-strong Confederate army now had to defend over 37 miles of Richmond-Petersburg lines. This was the last major Federal move to extend the lines prior to the final push in late March and early April. It came at a cost of 170 killed, 1160 wounded and 182 missing for an aggregate Federal loss of 1,512. Confederate casualties are unknown out of approximately 14,000 engaged.

In South Carolina, Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s army continued their march against light Confederate resistance. The geographical obstacles like the swamps and rivers proved to be more resistance than the Confederate army, though skirmishing took place at Blackville and at the Edisto River Bridge.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of February 1-7, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – Participated the Battle of Hatcher’s Run and were in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia until April 2, 1865.      

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march through the Carolinas until March 11, 1865.

3rd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Duvall’s Bluff, Arkansas until May 13, 1865.

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march through the Carolinas until March 3, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 7, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 5, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Washington, D.C. until February 21, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in New Orleans, Louisiana until March 17, 1865.

11th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Assigned to duty guarding the line of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad from Nashville to the Kentucky line. Companies E, G, and I were at Gallatin, Tennessee. Company A was at Buck Lodge. Company B at Edgefield Junction. Company C at Richland. Company D at Sandersville. Company H was at Mitchellsville. The location of companies F and K are unknown at this time. The regiment remained on duty at these locations until June 25, 1865.

2nd Regiment Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling, until November 17, 1865.

Brackett’s Battalion of Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling until May 1866.

Hatch’s Independent Battalion of Cavalry – Companies A, B, C and D moved to Fort Abercrombie. Companies A and B assigned to garrison at Fort Abercrombie.  Company C assigned to garrison at Alexandria and Pomme de Terre. Company D on patrol duty from Fort Abercrombie to Pembina.  Companies E and F on frontier duty. The battalion would remain in these duty locations for the duration of the war – until April 26, 1866.

1st Minnesota Heavy Artillery Battery – On garrison duty at Chattanooga, Tennessee until September 27, 1865.

1st Minnesota Light Artillery Battery – On the march through the Carolinas until March 3, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty as infantry at Fort Irwin, Defenses of Chattanooga until March 30, 1865.

3rd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – Various sections on duty at Fort Ridgely, Fort Ripley and Fort Sisseton until May 1865.

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I - Attached to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry at Petersburg, Virginia until February 20, 1865. 

2nd United States Sharpshooters, Company A – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg until February 20, 1865.

Inactive units: 

1st Regiment Minnesota Cavalry “Mounted Rangers” – Formally mustered out of service on December 7, 1863. Inactive.  

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Mustered out of Federal service on April 29, 1864. Inactive.

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This Week in the American Civil War: January 25-31, 1865

MN150Logo_OL_FNLInformation courtesy of the

Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force

(www.mncivilwar150.com and “Minnesota Civil War 150” on Facebook)

 

Major Highlights for the Week

Wednesday January 25, 1865

The Confederate cruiser Shenandoah reached Melbourne, Australia, and later left for the northern Pacific to plague Federal fishing and whaling fleets.

Skirmishing occurred near Powhatan, Virginia and Simpsonville, Kentucky.

Thursday January 26, 1865

Federal Major General William T. Sherman continued to threaten Charleston, South Carolina, although he did not have any intention of attacking it. It was a useful means of diverting the Confederates.

Skirmishing occurred near Pocotaligo, South Carolina and Paint Rock, Alabama.

Friday January 27, 1865

Skirmishing was limited to Ennis’s Cross Roads, South Carolina and Eldrod’s Tanyard in DeKalb County, Alabama.

In Virginia, Confederate General Robert E. Lee pointed out to officials in Richmond that there was an “alarming” frequency of desertion in the army and that the rations were too small and that the Commissary Department could do a better job in supplying the Army of Northern Virginia.        

Saturday January 28, 1865

Confederate President Jefferson Davis named three commissioners to hold informal talks with Federal authorities as a result of the visits of Francis Preston Blair Sr., to Richmond. The Confederate commissioners were Vice President Alexander Stephens, R.M.T. Hunter of Virginia, and former U.S. Supreme Court justice John A. Campbell.

Confederate Secretary of War James Seddon recommend to Davis that General Robert E. Lee be appointed General-in-Chief of all Confederate armies by the act of Confederate Congress that was approved on January 23.

In South Carolina, a skirmish took place on the Combahee River.

Sunday January 29, 1865

    Skirmishing occurred at Robertsville, South Carolina; Danville, Kentucky; and near Harrodsburg, Kentucky.

There was considerable interest in where and how Federal Major General William T. Sherman would move his forces when he got rolling in South Carolina, and whether there was any hope for a successful peace process between Federal and Confederate officials.

Monday January 30, 1865

President Abraham Lincoln issued a pass for the three Confederate commissioners to go through U.S. military lines to Fort Monroe, Virginia.

Skirmishing broke out in La Fayette County, Missouri; Lawtonville, South Carolina; and at Chaplintown, Kentucky.

Federal Major General John Pope was assigned to command the new Military Division of the Missouri, consisting of the combined Missouri and Kansas areas.

Tuesday January 31, 1865

ROBERT E. LEE NAMED GENERAL-IN-CHIEF

Confederate President Jefferson Davis recommended to the Confederate Senate, which it promptly approved, the appointment of General Robert E. Lee as General-in-Chief of the Confederate Armies. However, the measure came too late to have any real effect as Lee continued primarily as commander of the Army of Northern Virginia.

President Abraham Lincoln issued instructions for Secretary of State William H. Seward to travel to Fort Monroe, Virginia to confer with the Confederate commissioners. Lincoln was willing to confer on restoration of the national authority throughout all states but would not recede from his position on slavery and would only treat the problem as that of one nation, and that there would be no cessation of hostilities other than an end to the war and disbandment of hostile forces.

In Washington, D.C., the U.S. House of Representatives passed by two-thirds the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, which abolished slavery. The vote was 119 in favor, 56 opposed and 8 abstentions. Since the U.S. Senate had already approved the measure, it now reverted to the states for ratification.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of January 25-31, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia until April 2, 1865.       

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

3rd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Duvall’s Bluff, Arkansas until May 13, 1865.

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – En route to New Orleans, Louisiana for duty until February 7, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Washington, D.C. until February 21, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

11th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Assigned to duty guarding the line of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad from Nashville to the Kentucky line. Companies E, G, and I were at Gallatin, Tennessee. Company A was at Buck Lodge. Company B at Edgefield Junction. Company C at Richland. Company D at Sandersville. Company H was at Mitchellsville. The location of companies F and K are unknown at this time. The regiment remained on duty at these locations until June 25, 1865.

2nd Regiment Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling, until November 17, 1865.

Brackett’s Battalion of Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling until May 1866.

Hatch’s Independent Battalion of Cavalry – Companies A, B, C and D moved to Fort Abercrombie. Companies A and B assigned to garrison at Fort Abercrombie.  Company C assigned to garrison at Alexandria and Pomme de Terre. Company D on patrol duty from Fort Abercrombie to Pembina.  Companies E and F on frontier duty. The battalion would remain in these duty locations for the duration of the war – until April 26, 1866.

1st Minnesota Heavy Artillery Battery – On duty at St. Paul and Rochester, Minnesota until February 1865.

1st Minnesota Light Artillery Battery – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty as infantry at Fort Irwin, Defenses of Chattanooga until March 30, 1865.

3rd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – Various sections on duty at Fort Ridgely, Fort Ripley and Fort Sisseton until May 1865.

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I - Attached to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry at Petersburg, Virginia until Feb. 20, 1865. 

2nd United States Sharpshooters, Company A – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg until Feb. 20, 1865.

Inactive units: 

1st Regiment Minnesota Cavalry “Mounted Rangers” – Formally mustered out of service on December 7, 1863. Inactive.  

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Mustered out of Federal service on April 29, 1864. Inactive.

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This Week in the American Civil War: January 18-24, 1865

MN150Logo_OL_FNLInformation courtesy of the

Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force

(www.mncivilwar150.com and “Minnesota Civil War 150” on Facebook)

 

Major Highlights for the Week

Wednesday January 18, 1865

Federal Major General William T. Sherman transferred command of Savannah, Georgia and the nearby area to Major General John G. Foster and the Department of the South.

President Abraham Lincoln conferred once again with Francis P. Blair Sr., on his mission to Richmond, Virginia. Lincoln gave him a letter to present to Confederate President Jefferson Davis reiterating Lincoln’s call for “one common country” thereby nullifying any peace proposal that allows the Confederacy to exist.

In Richmond, Davis was still searching for any additional troops that could be spared to oppose Sherman in the Carolinas. He also urged General Robert E. Lee once again to extend his command to include all of the Confederate armies, in addition to his immediate command of the Army of Northern Virginia.

Thursday January 19, 1865

Federal Major General William T. Sherman issued orders for his army to begin its new march from Savannah, Georgia northward into South Carolina. Though the troops did not start off simultaneously, some elements of the army began their march northward. Since South Carolina was the birthplace of the Confederacy, Federal troops were more vindictive towards that state than they were towards Georgians.

President Abraham Lincoln inquired of Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant as to whether a place existed in the army for his son, Robert. The younger Lincoln was soon appointed to the rank of captain and served as an assistant adjutant general on Grant’s staff.

Confederate General Robert E. Lee declined President Jefferson Davis’s offer to serve as General-in-Chief of the Confederate armies but admitted that he would serve in that capacity if so appointed. Pressure continued on Davis to appoint Lee to the position.

Friday January 20, 1865

The four Federal corps under Major General William T. Sherman, plus Brigadier General Judson Kilpatrick’s cavalry, got underway from their base of operations in Savannah, Georgia en route to South Carolina.

Secretary of War Edwin Stanton briefed President Abraham Lincoln of his visit to Savannah, Georgia and Fort Fisher, North Carolina.        

Saturday January 21, 1865

Federal Major General William T. Sherman embarked with his entire headquarters from Savannah, Georgia to Beaufort, South Carolina, pausing at Hilton Head. Sherman attempted to feign a movement to Charleston or Augusta, rather than Columbia.

Sunday January 22, 1865

    Fighting tapered off with only a small skirmish on the Benton Road, near Little Rock, Arkansas. Otherwise, Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s army was in motion towards South Carolina with the goal of reaching Goldsborough, North Carolina within six weeks.

Monday January 23, 1865

Confederate President Jefferson Davis signed an act providing for the appointment of a General-in-Chief of the Confederate Armies. The Confederate Congress had General Robert E. Lee in mind when it drafted the legislation.

Confederate Lieutenant General Richard Taylor assumed command of the Army of Tennessee, now reduced in strength to approximately 18,000 men, after the resignation of Lieutenant General John Bell Hood following the disastrous Nashville Campaign.

Tuesday January 24, 1865

The Congress of the Confederate States of America offered again to exchange prisoners with the Federals. This time, Federal Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant accepted the offer. His previous refusal to exchange prisoners had been intended to cut down Southern manpower even further.

Confederate Lieutenant General Nathan Bedford Forrest assumed command of the Confederate District of Mississippi, East Louisiana and West Tennessee.

Skirmishing occurred at Fayetteville, Arkansas and Bayou Goula, Louisiana.

President Abraham Lincoln sent a telegraph to Vice-President-elect Andrew Johnson at Nashville, instructing Johnson to be in Washington for the March 4 inauguration.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of January 18-24, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia until April 2, 1865.       

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

3rd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Duvall’s Bluff, Arkansas until May 13, 1865.

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On provost duty at St. Louis, Missouri until January 29, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – En route to Washington, D.C. via Clifton, Tennessee until January 29, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

11th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Assigned to duty guarding the line of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad from Nashville to the Kentucky line. Companies E, G, and I were at Gallatin, Tennessee. Company A was at Buck Lodge. Company B at Edgefield Junction. Company C at Richland. Company D at Sandersville. Company H was at Mitchellsville. The location of companies F and K are unknown at this time. The regiment remained on duty at these locations until June 25, 1865.

2nd Regiment Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling, until November 17, 1865.

Brackett’s Battalion of Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling until May 1866.

Hatch’s Independent Battalion of Cavalry – Companies A, B, C and D moved to Fort Abercrombie. Companies A and B assigned to garrison at Fort Abercrombie.  Company C assigned to garrison at Alexandria and Pomme de Terre. Company D on patrol duty from Fort Abercrombie to Pembina.  Companies E and F on frontier duty. The battalion would remain in these duty locations for the duration of the war – until April 26, 1866.

1st Minnesota Heavy Artillery Battery – On duty at St. Paul and Rochester, Minnesota until February 1865.

1st Minnesota Light Artillery Battery – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty as infantry at Fort Irwin, Defenses of Chattanooga until March 30, 1865.

3rd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – Various sections on duty at Fort Ridgely, Fort Ripley and Fort Sisseton until May 1865.

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I - Attached to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry at Petersburg, Virginia until Feb. 20, 1865. 

2nd United States Sharpshooters, Company A – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg until Feb. 20, 1865.

Inactive units: 

1st Regiment Minnesota Cavalry “Mounted Rangers” – Formally mustered out of service on December 7, 1863. Inactive.  

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Mustered out of Federal service on April 29, 1864. Inactive.

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This Week in the American Civil War: January 11-17, 1865

MN150Logo_OL_FNLInformation courtesy of the

Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force

(www.mncivilwar150.com and “Minnesota Civil War 150” on Facebook)

 

Major Highlights for the Week

Wednesday January 11, 1865

Meeting in St. Louis, the Constitutional Convention of Missouri adopted an ordinance abolishing slavery.

Confederate Major General Thomas Rosser with a small band of about 300 Confederates captured 580 Federal troops and caused 28 casualties while seizing considerable quantities of rations in a raid at Beverly, West Virginia. Federal investigators later called it a disaster due to carelessness and lack of discipline.

In Richmond, Virginia, Confederate President Jefferson Davis continued to gather all available reserves, militia, recruits and the tattered Army of Tennessee, which was in Tupelo, Mississippi, over to South Carolina to face Federal Major General William T. Sherman who was on the move from Savannah, Georgia.

Thursday January 12, 1865

The sixty vessels of the Federal war fleet arrived off of Fort Fisher, North Carolina, containing a vast number of troop transports with eight thousand soldiers prepared to do battle. Landings, however, had to be put off until the next day. Confederate Colonel William Lamb, commanding the garrison at Fort Fisher, learned of the expedition’s arrival and notified General Braxton Bragg, commander of the Confederate forces in the Wilmington, North Carolina area.

Francis Preston Blair Sr., the aging Democrat political leader, conferred with Confederate President Jefferson Davis on prospects of possible peace. Though he was acting unofficially, it is presumed that Blair had the backing of President Abraham Lincoln. The Confederate president gave Blair a letter indicating Davis’s willingness to enter into peace negotiations.

Friday January 13, 1865

ATTACK ON FORT FISHER, NORTH CAROLINA BEGINS/HOOD RESIGNS

Admiral David Dixon Porter’s Federal naval fleet with 627 guns on 59 vessels began bombarding Fort Fisher, North Carolina, at the mouth of the Cape Fear River. With small boats from the Navy, approximately 8,000 Federal troops under Major General Alfred H. Terry’s command were put ashore on the narrow north-south peninsula above the fort. There was no Confederate opposition to the landing. Colonel William Lamb, commanding the fort’s garrison, called upon General Braxton Bragg and his 6,000 troops between Wilmington and the fort, to attack the landing party.

Confederate Lieutenant General John Bell Hood, the flamboyant commander of the Army of Tennessee, resigned his post in Tupelo, Mississippi. Lieutenant General Richard Taylor was named his successor who would operate under the supervision of General P.G.T. Beauregard.      

Saturday January 14, 1865

FORT FISHER BATTLE CONTINUES

Major General Alfred H. Terry’s Federal expeditionary force secured its position on the sandy peninsula north of Fort Fisher, North Carolina, and completed its defensive line to hold of General Braxton Bragg’s Confederates. The fire of the Federal fleet, monitors and wooden ships was termed “magnificent” for its power and accuracy, while the Confederates inside the fort were unable to repair damage to the fortification. Confederate Colonel William Lamb and Major General William H.C. Whiting, who was with Lamb in the fort, continued their calls to Bragg for assistance.

Some of Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s forces moved out to a new position from Beaufort to Pocotaligo, South Carolina.

General P.G.T. Beauregard temporarily took command of the Confederate Army of Tennessee, while waiting for Lieutenant General Richard Taylor to arrive.

Sunday January 15, 1865

    ASSAULT ON FORT FISHER

After two-days of heavy naval bombardment, the Federal forces attempted a two-pronged assault of Fort Fisher, North Carolina. A naval and Marine Corps brigade of about 2,000 moved forward on the ocean side of the narrow peninsula, but met the full force of the defenders infantry and three remaining movable guns. They fell back in panic and defeat. However, on the Cape Fear River, 3,300 men of Brigadier General Adelbert Ames division rushed forward with more success. After being held up by the strong traverses constructed by the Confederates, they managed to get through. By late evening, the had the entire fort and its garrison of approximately 1,900 Confederates in their possession, including Colonel William Lamb and Major General William H.C. Whiting who were both wounded. Confederate casualties are estimated around 500 while the Federal losses amounted to 266 killed, 1018 wounded and 57 missing for an aggregate total of 1,341. The Southern officers at the fort violently assailed General Braxton Bragg for failing to relieve the pressure, but Bragg claimed the Federal defensive line was too strong.

In Boston, Massachusetts, Edward Everett, the famous orator who gave the keynote address at the dedication of the Soldiers National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania alongside President Abraham Lincoln died at the age of seventy-one.

Monday January 16, 1865

At Fort Fisher, North Carolina, in the wake of the Federal attack, the main magazine accidentally exploded killing 25, wounding 66 and leaving 13 missing for 104 casualties.

In Washington, Francis Preston Blair Sr. reported back to President Abraham Lincoln over the recent peace discussions with Confederate President Jefferson Davis. Blair presented Lincoln with Davis’s letter which spoke of negotiations between the two nations.

Davis, informed of the fall of Fort Fisher, urged General Braxton Bragg at Wilmington, North Carolina, to retake the fort if it was possible.

The Confederate Senate passed a resolution, by a vote of 14 to 2, that it was the judgment of Congress that General Robert E. Lee should be assigned as General-in-Chief of the Armies of the Confederacy and that General P.G.T. Beauregard should command the army in South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. It also suggested that General Joseph E. Johnston should be re-assigned to his old command, the Army of Tennessee. Many in the South had long favored such a move.

Tuesday January 17, 1865

Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s army was about ready to move northward from the Savannah, Georgia area, although rain and high water in the rivers delayed their actual departure.

News of the Federal victory at Fort Fisher continued to spread throughout the Union and Confederate states.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of January 11-17, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia until April 2, 1865.       

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

3rd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Duvall’s Bluff, Arkansas until May 13, 1865.

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On provost duty at St. Louis, Missouri until January 29, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Murfreesboro, Tennessee until January 19, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

11th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Assigned to duty guarding the line of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad from Nashville to the Kentucky line. Companies E, G, and I were at Gallatin, Tennessee. Company A was at Buck Lodge. Company B at Edgefield Junction. Company C at Richland. Company D at Sandersville. Company H was at Mitchellsville. The location of companies F and K are unknown at this time. The regiment remained on duty at these locations until June 25, 1865.

2nd Regiment Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling, until November 17, 1865.

Brackett’s Battalion of Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling until May 1866.

Hatch’s Independent Battalion of Cavalry – Companies A, B, C and D moved to Fort Abercrombie. Companies A and B assigned to garrison at Fort Abercrombie.  Company C assigned to garrison at Alexandria and Pomme de Terre. Company D on patrol duty from Fort Abercrombie to Pembina.  Companies E and F on frontier duty. The battalion would remain in these duty locations for the duration of the war – until April 26, 1866.

1st Minnesota Heavy Artillery Battery – On duty at St. Paul and Rochester, Minnesota until February 1865.

1st Minnesota Light Artillery Battery – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty as infantry at Fort Irwin, Defenses of Chattanooga until March 30, 1865.

3rd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – Various sections on duty at Fort Ridgely, Fort Ripley and Fort Sisseton until May 1865.

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I - Attached to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry at Petersburg, Virginia until Feb. 20, 1865. 

2nd United States Sharpshooters, Company A – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg until Feb. 20, 1865.

Inactive units: 

1st Regiment Minnesota Cavalry “Mounted Rangers” – Formally mustered out of service on December 7, 1863. Inactive.  

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Mustered out of Federal service on April 29, 1864. Inactive.

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This Week in the American Civil War: January 4-10, 1865

MN150Logo_OL_FNLInformation courtesy of the

Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force

(www.mncivilwar150.com and “Minnesota Civil War 150” on Facebook)

 

Major Highlights for the Week

Wednesday January 4, 1865

Federal troops embarked at Bermuda Hundred landing for a new expedition against Fort Fisher, North Carolina, this time under the command of Major General Alfred H. Terry. Most of the soldiers had taken part in the failed expedition the previous month under Major General Benjamin Butler.

Skirmishing occurred at Thorn Hill, Alabama and at The Ponds, Mississippi.

Thursday January 5, 1865

Confederate President Jefferson Davis found himself to be concerned and frustrated by increasing dissension, controversy over the draft, manpower problems, and the general state of the war itself.

In Washington, D.C., President Abraham Lincoln was bothered by job seekers after election rewards, and he tried to concentrate on trade in recovered areas and domestic affairs. Lincoln issued a pass to go through the lines to James W. Singleton, one of the several unofficial and self-named envoys seeking a possible settlement of the war.

Meanwhile, Secretary of War Edwin Stanton headed to Savannah, Georgia to consult with Major General William T. Sherman.

Friday January 6, 1865

In the United States House of Representatives, Republican Congressman J.M. Ashley of Ohio again brought up the proposed 13th Amendment to abolish slavery. The amendment passed the U.S. Senate, where Republicans and unionists had the requisite two-thirds majority vote, but it languished in the House. Lincoln, the Administration and some Republican House members were putting pressure on certain Democrats to change their votes. Many people, including Lincoln, were anxious to see the amendment in effect as soon as possible.

Federal Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant, at Petersburg, Virginia, sent a telegraph message to President Abraham Lincoln requesting that Major General Benjamin Butler be removed from command of the Army of the James because of a lack of confidence in his military ability. By rank, Butler would have commanded the Army of the Potomac in Grant’s absence, leading to Grant’s call for removal.

Confederate President Jefferson Davis was struggling in vain to find troops to defend the Carolinas from Federal Major General William T. Sherman’s forces that were preparing to move north from Savannah, Georgia.      

Saturday January 7, 1865

The active military career of Federal Major General Benjamin F. Butler came to an end when orders were issued by Secretary of War Edwin Stanton removing him from command of the Department of Virginia and North Carolina. Butler’s replacement was Major General E.O.C. Ord. The mess of Fort Fisher brought matters to a head and Butler was removed regardless of political implications.

More Federal troops were pulled out of the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, and sent elsewhere.

Skirmishing occurred in Johnson County, Arkansas, and with Indians at Valley Station and Julesburg in Colorado Territory.

The Danish ironclad Sphinx left Copenhagen, Denmark for Quiberon Bay, France. She had been secretly purchased by the Confederates and would later be christened the C.S.S. Stonewall.

Sunday January 8, 1865

     The huge Naval fleet under Rear Admiral David Dixon Porter, plus the transport fleet containing Major General Alfred H. Terry’s expeditionary force, arrived at rendezvous off of Beaufort, North Carolina, before again attempting to take Fort Fisher.

Federal Major General E.O.C. Ord took command of the Department of Virginia and North Carolina, as well as the Army of the James, in place of the relieved Major General Benjamin F. Butler.

Federal Major General John A. Logan resumed command of the 15th Corps, relieving Major General Peter J. Osterhaus.

Monday January 9, 1865

The Constitutional Convention of Tennessee adopted an amendment abolishing slavery in the state and putting it to the vote of the people, scheduled for February 22, 1865.

Confederate Lieutenant General John Bell Hood moved his discouraged and greatly diminished Army of Tennessee to Tupelo, Mississippi.

In the U.S. House of Representatives, Democrat Congressman Moses Odell of New York indicated his change of position regarding the 13th Amendment and abolition of slavery. He would later receive an important political job in the Lincoln Administration and was one of the Democrats who made the passage of the amendment possible.

Tuesday January 10, 1865

The debate in the U.S. House of Representatives over the 13th Amendment and slavery abolition continued in a heated fashion.

A skirmish near Glasgow, Missouri was the only marked fighting for the day as the only major operation under way, the second expedition to Fort Fisher, was held up by raging seas and stormy weather off Beaufort, North Carolina.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of January 4-10, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg, Virginia until April 2, 1865.       

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865

3rd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Duvall’s Bluff, Arkansas until May 13, 1865.

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On provost duty at St. Louis, Missouri until January 29, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Murfreesboro, Tennessee until January 19, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty in Eastport, Mississippi until February 6, 1865.

11th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Assigned to duty guarding the line of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad from Nashville to the Kentucky line. Companies E, G, and I were at Gallatin, Tennessee. Company A was at Buck Lodge. Company B at Edgefield Junction. Company C at Richland. Company D at Sandersville. Company H was at Mitchellsville. The location of companies F and K are unknown at this time. The regiment remained on duty at these locations until June 25, 1865.

2nd Regiment Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling, until November 17, 1865.

Brackett’s Battalion of Minnesota Cavalry – Engaged in frontier and patrol duty between Forts Wadsworth, Abercrombie, Ripley and Ridgely with headquarters at Fort Snelling until May 1866.

Hatch’s Independent Battalion of Cavalry – Companies A, B, C and D moved to Fort Abercrombie. Companies A and B assigned to garrison at Fort Abercrombie.  Company C assigned to garrison at Alexandria and Pomme de Terre. Company D on patrol duty from Fort Abercrombie to Pembina.  Companies E and F on frontier duty. The battalion would remain in these duty locations for the duration of the war – until April 26, 1866.

1st Minnesota Heavy Artillery Battery – On duty at St. Paul and Rochester, Minnesota until February 1865.

1st Minnesota Light Artillery Battery – On duty in Savannah, Georgia until February 1, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty as infantry at Fort Irwin, Defenses of Chattanooga until March 30, 1865.

3rd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – Various sections on duty at Fort Ridgely, Fort Ripley and Fort Sisseton until May 1865.

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I - Attached to the 1st Battalion, Minnesota Infantry at Petersburg, Virginia until Feb. 20, 1865. 

2nd United States Sharpshooters, Company A – Participated in the Siege of Petersburg until Feb. 20, 1865.

Inactive units: 

1st Regiment Minnesota Cavalry “Mounted Rangers” – Formally mustered out of service on December 7, 1863. Inactive.  

1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – Mustered out of Federal service on April 29, 1864. Inactive.

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Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force “Nashville” video series

MN150Logo_OL_FNLThe Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force observed the anniversaries of the Battles of Franklin and Nashville from November 13-17, 2014 which culminated in the dedication to a marker on Shy’s Hill in Nashville on November 16. The marker commemorates the contributions of the 5th, 7th, 9th and 10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry Regiments at Shy’s Hill. The links to the video series are below.

 

 

Posted in 1864, Battlefield Preservation, Battles, Commemoration, Education, Film | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment