This Week in the American Civil War: April 19-25, 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 April 19, 1865

FUNERAL SERVICES FOR PRESIDENT LINCOLN

President Andrew Johnson, the Cabinet, Supreme Court justices, members of Congress, military figures and the diplomatic corps in full “court dress” filed into the East Room of the White House. Robert Todd Lincoln represented the family as Mrs. Lincoln and Tad remained sequestered. At the head of the catafalque stood Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant alone. After the brief service, the funeral carriage, escorted by cavalry, infantry, artillery, Marines, their banners draped, and the bands playing sorrowful dirges, carried Lincoln’s body past throngs of people to the rotunda of the Capitol. Now it was the public’s turn, and, until the next evening, they filed past the catafalque in steady streams.

Federal Major General John Pope, commanding the Federal Military Division of the Missouri in St. Louis wrote to Confederate Lieutenant General E. Kirby Smith, commander of the Confederate Trans-Mississippi Department, suggesting that the forces west of the Mississippi River surrender on the same terms as those which Lieutenant General Grant gave to General Robert E. Lee ten days prior.

Confederate President Jefferson Davis and his entourage arrived at Charlotte, North Carolina. It was here that Davis first learned of Lincoln’s assassination.

Thursday April 20, 1865

More than 39,000 people filed by President Abraham Lincoln’s body lying in state at the U.S. Capitol as the public viewing came to a close.

Federal troops now occupied Macon, Georgia. Skirmishing continued near Spring Hill, Mimms Mills on Tobesofkee Creek, Georgia; and at Rocky Creek Bridge and Montpelier Springs, Alabama.

Former Confederate General Robert E. Lee wrote to Confederate President Jefferson Davis recommending suspension of hostilities and the restoration of peace.

The Arkansas legislature ratified the Thirteenth Amendment.

Friday April 21, 1865

The body of President Abraham Lincoln left Washington at 8 a.m. en route to Springfield, Illinois, with the train being stopped often to accommodate immense crowds of mourners. The train reached Harrisburg, Pennsylvania at 8:30 p.m.

At Millwood, Virginia, John Singleton Mosby’s Confederate rangers were formally disbanded.

President Andrew Johnson told an Indiana delegation that he did not believe the Southern states had ever left the Union, a position contrary to that held by the Radical Republicans.

Saturday April 22, 1865

Most of the military action was now insignificant, with only the Federal cavalry of James Harrison Wilson active in Georgia and Alabama. Skirmishing took place at Buzzard Roost, Georgia; Howard’s Gap in the Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina; near Linn Creek and near the mouth of the Big Gravois River, Missouri.

Federal Major General Henry Halleck assumed command of the Military Division of the James, and Major General Nathaniel P. Banks resumed command of the Department of the Gulf.

John Wilkes Booth and David Herold, after nearly a week out in the open, finally got across the Potomac River in a fishing skiff, to Gumbo Creek on the Virginia shore. Plans were now to continue southward. Meanwhile, the search had intensified north of the Potomac River.

The Lincoln Funeral Train traveled from Harrisburg to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where it would remain for two days.

Sunday April 23, 1865

     Skirmishing occurred at Munford’s Station, Alabama; Hendersonville, North Carolina; and near Fort Zarah, Kansas.

President Lincoln’s Funeral Train was still in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where the deceased president lied in state at Independence Hall for mourners to pay their respects.

Monday April 24, 1865

Federal Lieutenant General Ulysses Grant arrived at the headquarters of Major General William T. Sherman at Raleigh, North Carolina to inform him that President Andrew Johnson rejected Sherman’s agreement with Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston. Sherman was ordered to give 48 hours-notice and then resume hostilities if there was no surrender. Johnston was promptly given notice of the truce’s suspension.

At Charlotte, North Carolina, Confederate President Jefferson Davis approved Johnston’s agreement with Sherman, not aware that it was already rejected by President Andrew Johnson.

John Wilkes Booth and David Herold crossed the Rappahannock River at Port Conway, Virginia, in their efforts to escape Federal pursuers.

At 4 a.m., President Lincoln’s Funeral Train departed Philadelphia and arrived in New York City at 10:50 a.m. where he laid in state at City Hall until the next day.

Tuesday April 25, 1865

Federal cavalry closed in on John Wilkes Booth and David Herold who were staying inside of a tobacco barn owned by Richard H. Garrett, south of the Rappahannock River in Virginia.

Confederate troops in North Carolina were preparing to move after President Andrew Johnson rejected the peace terms that Federal Major General William T. Sherman had negotiated. However, General Joseph E. Johnston requested that Sherman re-open negotiations. They agreed to a meeting the next day.

President Abraham Lincoln’s Funeral Train departed New York City at 4:15 p.m. and arrived at the Old Capitol in Albany, New York at 10:55 p.m.

Where Minnesota Regiments were the week of April 19-25, 1865 

Active units:

1st Battalion Minnesota Infantry – On duty at Appomattox Court House until May 2, 1865.       

2nd Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Raleigh, North Carolina until April 30, 1865.

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

4th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Raleigh, North Carolina until April 30, 1865.

5th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march to Montgomery, Alabama until April 25, 1865.

6th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march to Montgomery, Alabama until April 25, 1865.

7th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march to Montgomery, Alabama until April 25, 1865.

8th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On duty at Raleigh, North Carolina until April 30, 1865.

9th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march to Montgomery, Alabama until April 25, 1865.

10th Minnesota Volunteer Infantry – On the march to Montgomery, Alabama until April 25, 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 Raleigh, North Carolina until April 30, 1865.

2nd Independent Battery Minnesota Light Artillery – On duty in Philadelphia, Tennessee until July 1865.

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

1st United States Sharpshooters Company I Mustered out of Federal Service on March 19, 1865.

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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