The American Civil War, day by day - Page 92 - Politics | PoFo

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August 9, Tuesday

His attempts to move around Atlanta thwarted, Sherman turns to his guns, wiring Washington that he intends to “make the inside of Atlanta too hot to be endured.” He admits to Washington that he is “too impatient for a siege.” A bombardment will simply satisfy his need to do something while figuring out how best to draw Hood into a decisive battle. Today, Federal gunners pour more than 5,000 shells into the city. At least six civilians, including women and children, die in the bombardment. Sherman has written to his wife of Atlanta that “most of the inhabitants are gone; it is now simply a big fort.” But, in fact, about 10,000 civilians remain. Every time the shells start to hiss and shriek, many residents take refuge in their backyard bombproofs—holes dug about ten feet deep and roofed with planks and several feet of earth. Hood sends a message to Sherman protesting the bombardment. He cites the thousands of noncombatants still in the city and points out that his own defense lines are a full mile from town. Sherman replies that Atlanta is an important military arsenal—and keeps up the shelling.

In Virginia, the siege lines at Petersburg are quiet. Sheridan prepares to move from Halltown and Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, toward Winchester, Virginia, and Early’s Confederates. In the Mobile Bay area Federal troops begin building up their siege lines around Fort Morgan, completely cut off from the Confederate-held city of Mobile. John S. Mosby is becoming more active in his raiding of Federal-held sections of Virginia. During mid-August, minor but extensive operations in central Arkansas include some skirmishing. A Federal expedition from La Grange, Tennessee, to Oxford, Mississippi, skirmishes at Hurricane Creek and Oxford.

A tremendous explosion rocks City Point, Virginia, killing 43, injuring 126, and causing vast property damage. Two Confederate agents have smuggled a small box on board a Union transport. The explosive goes off just before noon. Grant, sitting in front of his tent, is showered with debris but is uninjured.

President Lincoln writes General Banks that he is anxious for the people of Louisiana to ratify the new state constitution. Lincoln also writes Horace Greeley that most of the correspondence regarding negotiations by Greeley and others with Confederates can be published except for a few portions he doesn’t think it wise to reveal.
August 10, Wednesday

Sheridan briskly marches his army south from the Halltown-Harpers Ferry area toward Winchester in the Shenandoah Valley to “make the first move for the possession of the Shenandoah Valley.” When Sheridan begins the advance, Early deftly retreats from Bunker Hill to Fisher’s Hill, south of Strasburg, anchoring his right on Massanutten Mountain and his left on North Mountain, a spur of the Alleghenies four miles away. The Federals deploy along Cedar Creek, just north of Strasburg. Now Early and Sheridan both await reinforcement. Wilson’s cavalry and a division of XIX Corps have yet to reach Sheridan. Early is expecting Lieutenant General Richard H. Anderson with a division of infantry, led by Major General Joseph Kershaw, from the Army of Northern Virginia’s battle-hardened I Corps. Also on the way from Robert E. Lee’s army are a division of cavalry under Major General Fitzhugh Lee and a battalion of artillery.

General Hood sends Joseph Wheeler and 4,500 cavalrymen northward with orders to sever the Union rail supply line. Wheeler will destroy several miles of track around Dalton before being driven off; the damage will be quickly repaired, but Wheeler will stay on the prowl until September 9th, sending back sketchy reports of success to Atlanta.

Near Atlanta, action flares at Lovejoy’s Station, Georgia. Other fighting is at Baldwin, Florida; Tallahatchie River, Mississippi; and near Stone Chapel, Virginia. Union scouts operate from Morganza, Louisiana. Three small Federal vessels suffer severely during a two-day duel with Southern artillery at Gaines’ Landing, Arkansas, on the Mississippi. CSS Tallahassee takes prizes off Sandy Hook, New Jersey.

President Davis writes to Lee about obtaining an adequate supply of soap for the army in front of Petersburg.
August 11, Thursday

Faced with Sheridan’s advancing Federals, Jubal Early pulls his Confederates out of Winchester and heads south up the Shenandoah toward Cedar Creek. Fighting breaks out near Winchester, Newtown, and at Toll-Gate, near White Post. As news of the Federal victory at Mobile Bay spreads, the main active front remains the turbulent campaign in the Shenandoah, a plaguing thorn in the Federal flanks.

Meanwhile, other operations continue at a steady pace—a Union expedition from Rome, Georgia, to Jacksonville, Alabama; skirmishing in Arkansas on White Oak Creek and in Crawford County; a skirmish at Hartville, Missouri; an expedition of US Black troops to Kent’s Landing, Arkansas; and Federal operations in Johnson County, Missouri. Federal troops operate against Amerinds in Nebraska Territory until late October. The Yankees skirmish with Amerinds near Sand Creek in Colorado Territory.

President Davis tells Lee at Petersburg, “It is thought idle to attack your entrenchments but feasible to starve you out.”
August 11th,
Hank Williams Jr., Alabama
I just had to show 'em.I didn't need 'em.And so I headed out west to see some old friends of mine.
I thought if I'd climb up old Ajax Mountain,Maybe that would help me get it all off my mind.I made it up to the top,Picked out a clear spot,I thought a whole lot About the rest of my life.I had no idea then,Soon it would nearly end.Up on this mountainside,I would nearly die.And they're all in Alabama.And they're all in Dixieland.God, I'm dying here in Montana, please Lord,I just want to go back to hold her hand.
Just let me get back to my old homeland.They said I'd never sing again.I learned a lot about my friends.'Cause when you're shot down and out,You don't get many calls.But I saw some tears in some eyes,Soon my poor old mother would die,I nearly lost it all,When I lost my grandpa.But you can find us all in Alabama.Yeah, we're all down in Dixieland.I didn't die out in Montana, no Lord.You let me get back to my old homeland,And I'm gonna hold on to her hand.
I've done a whole lot of searchin' A whole lot of hurtin' Before I finally found my road in life.You gotta say things you wanna say.Go on and do things your own way.
And you can climb any old mountain Once you make up your mind.I made mine in Alabama.And I found mine down in Dixieland.I didn't die out in Montana, no Lord.You let me get back to my old homeland.And I'm gonna hold on to her hand.
August 12, Friday

Sheridan moves toward Early in the Shenandoah as the Confederates entrench along Cedar Creek, south of Winchester. A brief skirmish along Cedar Creek initiates the feeling-out process. Elsewhere, there are operations in Madison County, Alabama; in Ray and Carroll counties of Missouri; skirmishing near Van Buren, Arkansas; and operations against Amerinds in the San Andres Mountains of New Mexico and near Fort Garland, Colorado Territory. Confederate cruiser Tallahassee gathers in six more Yankee ships off New York. Alarm spreads along the mid-Atlantic and New England coasts.

In Washington some politicians, among them Thurlow Weed, tells Lincoln he is in danger of being defeated in the election. There is even some talk, completely unsubstantiated, that General Grant will be a candidate.
August 13, Saturday

For a full week there are serious demonstrations by Federals on the north bank of the James River east of Richmond at Four-Mile and Dutch creeks, Deep Bottom, Fussell’s Mill, Gravel Hill, Bailey’s Creek, White’s Tavern, Charles City Road, and New Market Road. The Federals hope to divert attention from Petersburg and to probe or take Confederate defenses. Lee is attentive but not too concerned.

Still, the trouble General Lee has feared comes, largely because of Grant’s mistaken assessment of what Lee has done. Grant is informed that General Richard Anderson’s entire corps has been sent to the Shenandoah Valley—rather than a single division—and he concludes that the Confederate line north of the James River must be held by no more than 8,500 men. Concerned about Sheridan’s safety and determined to keep up his alternating jabbing of Lee—now south, now north of the James—Grant orders Meade to unleash General Hancock north of the river once again. Grant’s immediate objective is to force Lee to recall the forces he has sent north and to prevent the dispatching of any more, but Grant also hopes Hancock will reach Richmond this time and he orders Meade to attack Petersburg if Hancock’s actions bring about “almost the entire abandonment” of the town.

Eight miles south of Richmond, at the first bend in the James, the main Confederate line of fortifications straddle the river, anchored on Chaffin’s Bluff to the north and Drewry’s Bluff to the south. Hancock’s objective is the supposedly weakened line extending northeast from Chaffin’s Bluff. Four miles downriver, to the east, a pontoon bridge now links Butler’s Federal forces on Bermuda Hundred with the part of his X Corps posted north of the river at Deep Bottom. In preparation for the offensive, Major General David Birney takes the rest of X Corps, along with Hancock’s artillery and Brigadier General David M. Gregg’s cavalry division, across the bridge from Bermuda Hundred this night. Meanwhile, Hancock’s II Corps conducts an elaborate ruse to make the Confederates believe the men are being sent north to reinforce Sheridan. Indeed, that is what the Federal troops think as they march through the lingering heat and the pervasive dust to the wharves at City Point, a half-dozen miles northeast of their Petersburg lines. There they file aboard steam transports that take them downstream, toward the Chesapeake Bay. Soon, however, the steamers hove to in midstream and wait. After a time, a tugboat brings new orders; the transports come about and head upstream, and the men understand where they are really going. They are to land at Deep Bottom and move out from there at dawn.

In the Shenandoah Valley fighting breaks out at Berryville and near Strasburg as Sheridan’s Federals meet stiffening resistance from Early’s force at Cedar Creek. Grant, thinking the entire I Corps from the Army of Northern Virginia is to reinforce Early, has ordered Sheridan not to attack for the moment. Sheridan has responded that the Cedar Creek position is a poor one to defend: “I cannot cover the numerous rivers that lead in on both of my flanks to the rear.” Then today Colonel John S. Mosby’s fast-riding Rangers destroy a large Federal wagon train near Berryville.

Illinois sees some minor operations by pro-Confederates in the Shawneetown area on the Ohio River. Federals operating against Forrest skirmish at Hurricane Creek, Mississippi. Other fighting occurs at Palatka and near Fort Barrancas, Florida. Federal operations in La Fayette, Saline, and Howard counties of Missouri last ten days.
August 14, Sunday

Thanks to disembarkation difficulties caused by low water, the soldiers from Hancock’s II Corps that were supposed to be landed by steamers and move out from Deep Bottom at dawn aren’t on shore and formed up until 9 am. The Federal order of battle has Birney with X Corps on the left, closest to the James. Brigadier General Gershom Mott, commanding Hancock’s 3rd Division, is in the center, with orders to push forward on the New Market road toward Richmond. And Brigadier General Francis Barlow, who in General John Gibbon’s temporary absence is leading the 1st and 2nd Divisions of II Corps, holds the right. While Gregg’s cavalry cover the extreme right and look for a chance to make a dash toward Richmond, Barlow is to attack the enemy at Fussell’s Mill on the Darbytown road, which parallels the New Market road a mile and a half to the north.

General Barlow, a Harvard-educated lawyer who enlisted as a private in 1861, is one of the best officers in the Northern army. But he has suffered more than most in this war. He was severely wounded in 1862 at Antietam and last year at Gettysburg, where he was left on the field for dead. General John B. Gordon found him there, tended to him, and arranged to get him into the care of Mrs. Barlow, a nurse who was traveling with the Federal Army. It took Barlow more than six months, with his wife constantly at his side, to recover. Then last month his fragile health was shaken again by the news that his wife contracted typhoid fever and died.

Barlow’s attack at Fussell’s Mill is supposed to be the key to Hancock’s offensive. With all the delays, it is midday before the advancing Federals make contact with the enemy; and when they do, it is clear at once that there are more Confederates present than the Federals expect. Birney and Mott, on the left and center, run into a full Confederate division commanded by Major General C.W. Field. Another division, under Major General Cadmus Marcellus Wilcox, is at Chaffin’s Bluff, and still more troops are coming. Birney and Mott can make no headway, and when Barlow finally gets his assault started on the right, he fumbles it. He has been instructed to attack in force along the Darbytown road. Instead, he has formed a line of battle that extends from Mott’s right flank to the road. In the thick woods Barlow’s men, many of them indifferent recruits led by inexperienced officers, become confused and hopelessly strung out. Barlow has 10,000 men in his two divisions; but after forming his line, he has only a single brigade left with which to attack Fussell’s Mill.

Two regiments of Confederate cavalry are at the mill, and the Federals quickly drive them away. There is little time to enjoy the victory, however. Field pulls a brigade out of the right of his line and sends it swinging north where it charges into the flank of one of Barlow’s brigades and chases it back. The move has weakened the Confederate line in front of Birney’s men; they double their efforts and are able to take some Confederate entrenchments and four guns, but can go no further.

Although the Federal attack is stalled, it is having the desired effect on Lee. He concludes, after exchanging a flurry of telegraph messages with Field, that this new threat to Richmond is serious, and he dispatches to meet it Mahone’s infantry division and two cavalry divisions—Hampton’s and Rooney Lee’s. He also recalls Fitzhugh Lee’s cavalry division from Culpeper.

Hancock decides to shift the weight of his attack farther to the north, in an attempt to turn the Confederate left. During the night he has Birney pull back most of his command and march it behind Mott’s and Barlow’s divisions toward the extreme Federal right. Birney is to complete his circuit and attack the enemy flank as early as possible tomorrow, while Gregg launches a diversionary attack up the Charles City road.

This night, General Warren starts pulling V Corps out of the Petersburg line on the Federal left. Its place is taken by Burnside’s old IX Corps, now commanded by Major General John G. Parke. The corps simply extends to the left, increasing the intervals between men until the gap in the line is covered. Depending on how Hancock fares, Grant is considering sending Warren around the Confederate right flank.

Skirmishing flares near Strasburg in the Shenandoah as Sheridan withdraws from Early’s front toward Berryville. Skirmishing at Lamar, Mississippi, marks the long, frustrating Federal drive to halt Forrest. The only action on the Atlanta front consists of skirmishes near Dalton, at Pine Log Church, and near Fairmount, Georgia.
August 15, Monday

In his attempt to get into position for the flank attack that General Hancock has ordered on the Confederate lines at Chaffin’s Bluff, General Birney falls victim to a different enemy—the thick, brushy, vine-clustered woods of the Tidewater. Getting through this tangle, on terrain that is flat and devoid of landmarks, along narrow, winding paths would be difficult for an individual who is familiar with the area. For an army led by newcomers with inadequate maps, the task is nearly impossible. For the entire day, Birney and X Corps virtually disappears, groping toward the enemy left. It is after 6 pm before they find their bearings, and by now it is too late to attack.

In the Shenandoah Valley there is more skirmishing at Cedar Creek, at Strasburg, Virginia, and near Charlestown, West Virginia. In Georgia, Sherman’s men move slowly toward Utoy Creek, southwest of Atlanta, fighting on Peachtree Road, at Buchanan, Sandtown, and Fairburn. Confederate cavalry raid the Nashville & Northwestern Railroad in Tennessee. Federals raid the Florida Railroad near Gainesville, Florida, through the 19th. A Federal scout in Alabama probes from Triana to Valhermoso Spring, Missouri. Minor operations in southwest Missouri and northwest Arkansas last ten days.

Federals capture the English-built Confederate cruiser Georgia outside of Lisbon. However, the never too successful Georgia has been sold by the Confederacy to an English shipowner and has been disarmed. CSS Tallahassee captures six schooners off New England.

Lieutenant General Richard Taylor is assigned to command the Confederate Department of Alabama, Mississippi, and east Louisiana.
August 16, Tuesday

Early this morning, General Gregg’s cavalry and one of General Barlow’s infantry brigades fight their way to within seven miles of Richmond, driving off an enemy cavalry brigade and killing its commander. General Birney launches his assault at Fussell’s Mill, the skirmishers fighting their way forward through a huckleberry swamp and heavy undergrowth. Overcoming the difficulties, X Corps hits the enemy line hard, and now the Confederates show that the stress of the long campaign is affecting them as well. Two of Field’s brigades break and run, opening a perilous gap in the center of the Confederate line. As Field will write later, “Not only the day but Richmond seemed to be gone.” Neither Birney nor Hancock, however, can see this advantage through the brush. It is several hours before Hancock can “ascertain the exact state of affairs” and by then it is too late. Field has brought in additional brigades from his left—despite the threat posed there by Gregg—and from his right and sent them against the newly taken works. At first the Confederates are driven back; but while they regroup, their wounded comrades lying between the lines shout to them to charge again. Enthusiasm seizes the whole line, and with a yell they dash against the fortifications, storm the dense line crowded there, and kill them “by the score” as they flee. About the same time, Hampton’s Confederate riders slam into Gregg’s cavalry and drive them back with heavy casualties. The Federal rearguard, about to be overrun, retreat for safety into a swamp.

It is clear to Hancock that he is facing a great deal more resistance—five Confederate divisions, about 20,000 men in all—than he anticipated. With his force of 28,000, he is not going to be able to dislodge an entrenched enemy and gain Richmond. The Federals have already suffered nearly 3,000 casualties, three times the defenders’ losses. Grant is unperturbed by the situation. He tells Hancock to stay where he is, threatening and skirmishing but not attempting to attack the enemy lines. Then Grant tells Meade that is is time to strike again with the other fist, south of the James.

In the Shenandoah Valley, General Wesley Merritt’s Federal cavalry division is patrolling the mouth of the Luray Valley. Seeing no sign of the enemy, the troopers prepare to camp for the night a half mile north of the Shenandoah, near Front Royal. Suddenly Fitzhugh Lee’s cavalry, supported by a brigade of infantry from Kershaw’s division, attack the pickets of one of Merritt’s brigades led by Colonel Thomas Devin. Hearing the eruption of firing, Merritt moves fast. Leaving Devin to hold Lee, he order’s Custer’s brigade to hasten toward the Shenandoah where the main body of Kershaw’s Confederates have been observed. Moving diagonally to their left, Custer’s men soon see that the lead Confederate units are in the act of crossing the river. Custer’s troopers, soon joined by other units from Merritt’s division, swiftly charge Kershaw’s infantrymen, who are caught fording the Shenandoah, and send them hurrying back in confusion to the other side, leaving behind 300 prisoners.

Having thus neatly slowed the advance of Jubal Early’s reinforcements, Merritt’s cavalry rejoin Sheridan’s army. With only two days’ rations on hand thanks to Mosby’s recent raid on his supply line, Sheridan has decided to fall back northward to better ground and Merritt’s troopers act as rearguard during its withdrawal. Burning all the wheat, hay, and provisions to be found in their path, the Federals draw off to the east side of the Valley, establishing a north-south line from near Charles Town to Berryville.

Cavalry skirmishes at Allatoona, and Kilpatrick’s Federals raid from Fairburn around Atlanta. Federals undertake operations from Mount Vernon, Indiana, into Kentucky until the 22nd. Other action is at Columbia, Missouri, and near Smoky Hill Crossing, Kansas. CSS Tallahassee takes four schooners and a bark off New England.
August 17, Wednesday

Jubal Early’s Confederates push northward from Cedar Creek after Sheridan’s withdrawing army. Sheridan has moved on to the Berryville area, leaving a rearguard at Winchester. In a sharp fight near Winchester Federal cavalry hold well, protecting the main column. Skirmishes break out in Georgia at South Newport, and in Mississippi in Issaquena County. On the Arkansas River near Pine Bluff, Arkansas, Confederates capture the Federal steamer Miller.

President Lincoln tells Grant, “ ... Hold on with a bull-dog gripe [sic], and chew & choke, as much as possible.” Grant has indicated his desire to continue the siege of Petersburg without weakening his army.
August 18, Thursday

Having waited to see how General Hancock fared in his assault on the Confederate defenses of Chaffin’s Bluff (not well), this morning Grant sends General Warren forward. Grant has several reasons for ordering the move, but the primary one, as before, is to sever another of Lee’s lines of supply—this time the Weldon Railroad. Warren is to cut it as close to the enemy lines as possible, then destroy it as far south as he can safely go. “I do not want him to fight any unequal battles or to assault fortifications,” Grant says. But Warren is told to consider his mission a reconnaissance in force and to take advantage of any weakness he discovers.

Rain has come at last to southern Virginia, but instead of bringing relief from the heat it merely raises the humidity—and turns the roads to quagmires. Warren marches his men west at 4 am, but they are slowed by the struggle to haul their wagons and artillery through the mud: After three hours they have advanced only about two miles. At this point they meet and brush aside a Confederate cavalry brigade, and by 9 am they have reached the railroad at Globe Tavern, just three miles south of the Confederate fortifications around Petersburg. General Warren establishes his headquarters at the tavern and deploys his 10,000 men. Brigadier General Charles Griffin’s 1st Division goes to work tearing up track while the 2nd Division, under the leadership of Brigadier General Romney B. Ayres, moves north to stand guard. Brigadier General Samuel W. Crawford’s 3rd Division takes up its position on Ayer’s right, and Brigadier General Lysander Cutler’s 4th Division is held in reserve to the rear.

The Confederate cavalry has reported that a Federal force is astride the Weldon Railroad. General Beauregard, who is back in command at Petersburg while Lee is north of the river, immediately dispatches Major General Henry Heth to the south with two brigades. Advancing through thick woods, Heth slashes into General Ayres’s left flank at 2 pm. He catches Colonel Nathan T. Dushane’s Maryland brigade by surprise, and the Federals fall back in confusion. Within minutes, Colonel Joseph Hayes’s brigade is also in retreat. But Ayres proves to be equal to the emergency. Quickly, he brings forward his reserves, rallies the scattered troops, and, with aid from Cutler’s and Crawford’s divisions, launches a counterattack. Their casualties exceed 900, and those of the Confederates are presumed to be about the same.

In Georgia, Judson Kilpatrick’s Federal cavalry begins its raid to Lovejoy’s Station which will last until the 22nd. Their efforts to destroy the Macon & Western Railroad are largely frustrated. Meanwhile, Schofield’s Army of the Ohio pushes forward along Utoy Creek. This point southwest of Atlanta is to provide the pivot for Sherman to swing east in his efforts to cut off the south side of the city. In addition, there is combat at Camp Creek.

In Arkansas fighting breaks out at Benton and near Pine Bluff; and in Tennessee a skirmish takes place at Charleston.

For the second time General Grant refuses to exchange Confederate prisoners of war; he has expressed a belief that such exchange will prolong the war. The Confederates urge exchange for humanitarian reasons and because they can use their men now in Federal hands, and are sorely strained to feed, house, clothe, and guard Federals in their control.
Doug64 wrote:For the second time General Grant refuses to exchange Confederate prisoners of war; he has expressed a belief that such exchange will prolong the war. The Confederates urge exchange for humanitarian reasons and because they can use their men now in Federal hands, and are sorely strained to feed, house, clothe, and guard Federals in their control.

All of which are excellent reasons for Grant to refuse the exchange.
Potemkin wrote:All of which are excellent reasons for Grant to refuse the exchange.

I tend to agree. It was pretty rough on the Union soldiers piling up in places like Andersonville, though.
Doug64 wrote:I tend to agree. It was pretty rough on the Union soldiers piling up in places like Andersonville, though.

True, but as Sherman said, “War is all hell.” By consistently refusing to exchange prisoners, Grant almost certainly shortened the Civil War, thereby saving countless lives on both sides. No consolation to the Union prisoners festering in Andersonville and elsewhere, of course, but Sherman summed it up rather well.
August 19, Friday

General Meade is delighted by the progress General Warren made yesterday against the Weldon Railroad, and has sent word that the railroad must be held “at all hazards.” Then he sets about getting Warren some help. One of Hancock’s divisions is recalled from Deep Bottom to help IX Corps and XVIII Corps extend their lines even more; this frees three IX Corps divisions, which are sent to Globe Tavern. Warren, in the meantime, orders Brigadier General Edward S. Bragg, commanding the battered remnant of the Iron Brigade, to extend V Corps’s line to the right and make a connection with IX Corps’s left. These lines are stretched thin, and the widely scattered men have to find each other in dense underbrush where visibility is limited to about twenty paces, then maintain contact and watch the enemy. Bragg is slow to move, gets lost in the woods, and winds up behind General Crawford’s line instead of on Crawford’s right as planned.

By now, Confederate reinforcements are marching south across the river. Lee has detached Mahone’s infantry division and Rooney Lee’s cavalry to help retake the Weldon Railroad. At 4:15 pm Mahone strikes Warren’s right flank at its weakest point—where Bragg’s Iron Brigade is still trying to find its proper place in line. Bragg’s troops give way and Mahone surges ahead, punching a hole through Crawford’s line and sweeping down on his flank and rear. At this moment the Federal artillery opens fire “upon friend and foe, the shells bursting among our men, the projectiles striking in the rear of the breastworks.” Caught between two fires, hundreds of Crawford’s men flee in panic and the V Corps line begins to crumble from right to left. Crawford gallops among his scattered soldiers in a vain effort to stem the rout. Four of the general’s staff officers have their horses shot from under them, as does the soldier who carries the headquarters flag; Crawford’s orderly is killed, and the general himself narrowly escapes capture. In all, the better part of two brigades surrender to Mahone’s victorious Confederates.

Meanwhile, Heth has launched a frontal assault against Warren’s center and left. Ayres’s division stoutly withstands this onslaught, and General Warren re-forms the routed elements of his right wing. With this force and the arriving divisions from IX Corps, Warren counterattacks through the thickets, regaining his line in savage, hand-to-hand fighting. Mahone’s division is sent reeling all the way to the fortifications, carrying along some of the Federal units that have become entangled with it. General Heth remains on the field with his two brigades; he hits Ayres’s front again and again, but can’t uproot him. As night falls, Warren retains possession of the field, Globe Tavern, his original line and, most important, the Weldon Railroad. He has lost only 382 killed and wounded, but more than 2,500 of his men, including 1,800 from Crawford’s division, are missing and presumed captured.

In the Shenandoah Early attempts to move north from Winchester to Bunker Hill, West Virginia. His men skirmish near Opequon Creek on the Berryville and Winchester Pike and at Franklin, West Virginia. In Georgia Federal reconnaissances continue toward East Point and the Confederate defenses south of Atlanta. There is combat at Red Oak, Flint River, and Jonesborough, Georgia, and the usual cavalry action. A five-day Federal Amerind scout begins on the Republican River in Kansas; and a skirmish erupts on Hurricane Creek, Mississippi.

President Lincoln is quoted in an interview as saying, “I cannot but feel that the weal or woe of this great nation will be decided in the approaching canvas.”
August 20, Saturday

While continuing his destruction of the Weldon Railroad, General Warren pulls his men out of the maddening underbrush and orders them to establish a new line about two miles to the rear, on open ground where they can see the enemy and bring their guns to bear. Drenched by a pouring rain, the exhausted soldiers labor through the night. Despite some skirmishing along the Weldon Railroad near Globe Tavern south of Petersburg, the Confederates suspend temporarily their efforts to dislodge the Federals.

Jancock’s forces, unsuccessful in their ill-planned diversion north of the James, pull back to Petersburg and Bermuda Hundred. In the Valley the sparring and skirmishing between Early and Sheridan continue, with action at Berryville, Opequon Creek, Virginia, and Bulltown, West Virginia.

Combat at Lovejoy’s Station on the Macon & Western Railroad in Georgia marks the Federal cavalry operations. Federals burn Legareville, South Carolina. Skirmishes occur at Pine Bluff, Tennessee, and near Rocheport, Missouri.

President Davis expresses his distress at the presence of Federal troops on the Weldon Railroad.
August 21, Sunday

Along the Weldon Railroad in Virginia, the Federal soldiers that have carried out General Warren’s order to work through the night have erected formidable earthworks by dawn. The wisdom of Warren’s withdrawal to his new positions is confirmed when both Mahone and A.P. Hill assault his line. The Confederates charge three ranks deep, screaming as they come. Warren gallops along the line, shouting for his soldiers to fire low. The 26 guns of Colonel Charles Wainright’s artillery brigade open up, cutting great swaths in the approaching ranks. Hill decides to call off the attack; but through a mistake in orders, Brigadier General Johnson Hagood’s South Carolina brigade continues the charge against the Federal left. Hagood, a combative prewar Secessionist, manages to drive some troops of Lysander Cutler’s 4th Division from their breastworks. But as the disorganized attackers press on, they are caught in a deadly crossfire. Those South Carolinians who aren’t killed or wounded begin to throw down their weapons and surrender to the Federals, who come swarming out of their entrenchments. Hagood himself is approached by one of Cutler’s staff officers, who carries a captured Confederate flag. Rather than surrender, however, Hagood shoots the officer, seizes the flag, and rides off on the wounded Federal’s horse. Before the startled Union troops can react, many of Hagood’s men also bolt to the rear. Even so, 448 of Hagood’s 681 men are dead, wounded, or captured, and six flags remain in Federal hands. Overall, from the 18th through the 21st Union losses for the Battle of the Weldon Railroad or Globe Tavern total 198 killed, 1,105 wounded, and 3,152 missing for 4,455 out of something over 20,000 engaged. Southern losses are estimated at 1,600 out of about 14,000 engaged.

The Federal hold on the Weldon Railroad is secure, and now begins the work of extending the fortifications and the entrenchments. Soon Globe Tavern is knitted firmly into the Federal works, and Petersburg is half encircled. The noose around the neck of Lee’s army has been drawn a little tighter, yet not tight enough by far. Although the Federals have cut the railroad, the Confederates will continue to use it. They simply stop their trains a day’s ride south of the enemy, transfer their goods to wagons, and haul them around the Federal left into Petersburg. “Whilst we are inconvenienced,” a member of Lee’s staff will say, “no material harm is done to us.” Grant is determined that more harm be done. The railroad has to be destroyed farther to the south, and he gives the job to Hancock, who today has just completed an exhausting march back to the main Federal lines from Deep Bottom. The men of the II Corps are becoming known as “Hancock’s Cavalry”; they stop marching, it is said, only while the staff officers get fresh horses. Without pausing to rest, Hancock sets two of his divisions to their new task. With Gregg’s cavalry screening them, they begin tearing up mile after mile of the Weldon tracks, working south from Warren’s lines.

In the Shenandoah, Sheridan’s withdrawal to better (and more easily supplied) ground five days ago—reminiscent of previous retreats by skittish Federal generals—has drawn a torrent of public criticism down upon him. The North suffers fresh agonies of fear that Early is about to start marauding in Maryland again but as Sheridan has explained to Grant, the movement is a deliberate invitation to lure the Confederates northward once more, whereupon he will be south of them and in a position to spring a giant trap. Amid the cries of panic and calls for his relief, Sheridan calmly asserts to Grant, “There is no occasion for alarm.”

But Early refuses Sheridan’s bait. Today he attacks, throwing his own corps against Sheridan’s right below Charles Town, while Anderson orders Kershaw’s infantry to assault Sheridan’s left at Berryville. Anderson’s movement is stopped cold by the Federal cavalry of Merritt and Wilson. At first the Confederates push back VI Corps in heavy fighting, but the Federal line is soon restored. Late at night Sheridan pulls back from Charles Town to Halltown near Harpers Ferry and the Potomac River, into a virtually impregnable position. Once more the Valley is largely free of Federals, but the area has been too much fought over to be of great value.

Confederates occupy Memphis. In a daring early morning raid, some two thousand men of Nathan Bedford Forrest enters the Tennessee city, hold it for part of the day, nearly capture Federal Major Generals S.A. Hurlburt and C.C. Washburn, and leave with few losses. The raid frustrates, demoralizes, and embarrasses the North. As a result, A.J. Smith’s Federal column pulls back, leaving Forrest free to operate against Sherman’s supply lines. Many lives, months of time, and large amounts of matériel have been spent in Federal efforts to bring Forrest to bay and still they are unsuccessful.

Otherwise there is action in Loudoun County, Virginia; at Grubb’s Crossroads, Kentucky; and Diamond Grove, Missouri.

The Presbyterian Church in the United States (PCUS, originally Presbyterian Church in the Confederate States of America) was a Protestant denomination in the Southern and border states of the United States that existed from 1861 to 1983.
The United Presbyterian Church in the United States of America (UPCUSA) was the largest branch of Presbyterianism in the United States from May 28, 1958, to 1983.
The Presbyterian Church (USA), abbreviated PC(USA), is a mainline Protestant denomination in the United States. It is the largest Presbyterian denomination in the US, and known for its liberal stance on doctrine and its ordaining of women and members of the LGBT community as elders and ministers.

More than a third of a century ago, Jefferson Davis, standing on the front portico of our State Capitol, took the oath of office, and delivered his inaugural address as the first and only President of the Confederate States. Since that memorable event, both he and his people have met disaster and misfortune, felt calamity and sorrow, and witnessed carnage and death.
He did not ap- pear upon those interesting scenes to assume the reins of authority — to sway the destinies of government. No, no ! He came to discharge a sacred duty, — to participate in the interesting ceremonies incident to the laying of the corner stone of this magnificent monument, de- signed to honor those Alabamians who went forth in obedience to the sovereign command of their native State, and died upon “the perilous edge of battle” while the Southern cross was gleaming.There was something pathetic in his devotion to his battle-flag. There were seldom covers for them, and in camp the color bearer sometimes rolled them up for a pillow — but in the battle, it was as the Cross to the Cru- sader, and he would follow wherever any would carry it.

United Presbyterian Reunion officiants "Southern Presbyterian" is a misnomer and "Northern Presbyterians" were throughout the South and "no one knows why animosities would last for 100 years. " And "no one knows why there would be a Northern and Southern Presbyterian Church" in Missions.
his faith and hope and patience to the end — his love of home, de- ference to woman and trust in God — his courage which sounded all the depths and shoals of misfortune, and for a time throttled fate — the ringing veil of his onset, his battle anthem for native land rising Heavenward above the roar of five hundred stormy fields?
his antagonist.
While we speak of the Confederate soldier, there rises before us the image of his antagonist, whom none that fought him would ever depreciate. He too came at the call of his State, the earthly tribunal before which it was our faith all men should bow.
He believed, and had been reared to believe, that the future of the Republic demanded but one flag between the seas.
-excerpt Montgomery Capitol Civil War Memorial ceremony
@Mike12, one thing that a lot of people don’t realize is that while the North was fighting to preserve the Union, its inhabitants were as loyal to their states as those of the South. I’ve read that when the Gettysburg National Cemetery was created for that battle’s Union dead the designer wanted to mix the reinterred bodies without concern for their home states, but opposition resulted in those who could be identified as serving in volunteer regiments being buried by state. (There were separate areas for Regulars and the unknowns, of which there must have been a lot.)
August 22, Monday

Early demonstrates toward Harpers Ferry, with a skirmish at Charles Town, West Virginia. Globe Tavern and the Weldon Railroad are quiet. Sputtering cavalry skirmishes break out at Jonesborough and Caton, Georgia. Other fighting takes place at Canton and Roaring Spring, Kentucky; in Yell County, Arkansas; and Cove Point, Maryland. Federals scout from Helena to Mount Vernon, Arkansas.

President Lincoln tells the 169th Ohio, “The nation is worth fighting for, to secure such an inestimable jewel” as opportunity under a free government.
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