This Week in the American Civil War: December 28, 1864 – January 3, 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 December 28, 1864

Confederate Lieutenant General John Bell Hood’s Army of Tennessee completed their crossing of the Tennessee River at Bainbridge, Tennessee and then headed towards Tupelo, Mississippi. Skirmishing broke out at Decatur, Alabama, and Okolona, Mississippi.

Thursday December 29, 1864

In the fading Franklin-Nashville Campaign, light skirmishing occurred at Hillsborough and Pond Springs, both in Alabama.

Friday December 30, 1864

In Washington, D.C., President Abraham Lincoln indicated in a Cabinet meeting that Major General Benjamin Butler would be removed from command of the Army of the James.

Skirmishing occurred near Caruthersville, Missouri and Leighton, Alabama.      

Saturday December 31, 1864

The year came to an end as people everywhere were continue to wonder about the future. The only military movements that occurred on this day were light skirmishes that occurred at Sharpsburg, Kentucky; Paint Rock Bridge and Russellville, Alabama.

Sunday January 1, 1865

     In the cold trenches in Petersburg, Virginia; on the streets of Savannah, Georgia and in Central Tennessee, the Federal troops remained largely inactive. Confederates tried to consolidate their positions in a vain attempt to cobble together a major fighting force. The only remaining fighting army was that of the Army of Northern Virginia that was pinned down by Federal Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant’s chokehold between Petersburg and Richmond, Virginia. Only a minor skirmish at Bentonville, Arkansas occurred on this day.

Monday January 2, 1865

Skirmishing occurred at Franklin and Lexington, Mississippi by Federal troops operating against the Mobile and Ohio Railroad.

A group of Kentuckians applied to have Major General Benjamin Butler assigned to their state.

The regular New Year’s reception was held at the White House in Washington for the diplomatic corps, Cabinet officers, judges, and military officers attending, though members of Congress complained that they were not invited.

Confederate President Jefferson Davis told General P.G.T. Beauregard that if it became necessary, Beauregard should remove Lieutenant General John Bell Hood as commander of the Army of Tennessee and replace him with Lieutenant General Richard Taylor.

Tuesday January 3, 1865

In Georgia, Federal Major General William T. Sherman transferred part of Major General Oliver O. Howard’s Army of the Tennessee from Savannah to Beaufort, South Carolina. This was art of Sherman’s preparation for a movement north into South Carolina.

Federal troops operating along the Mobile and Ohio Railroad fought a skirmish near Mechanicsburg, Mississippi and another skirmish occurred at Hardeeville, South Carolina.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of December 28, 1864 – January 3, 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 – Organized at St. Paul and Rochester 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.

About civilwarweek

Member - Minnesota Civil War Commemoration Task Force, Civil War reenactor and historian since 1993, holds Bachelor's Degree in History from Concordia University-St. Paul, currently pursuing Master's Degree in History at St. Cloud State University and is author of the forthcoming book, "Muskets and Memories: A Modern Man's Journey through the Civil War."
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