Friday, November 22, 2013

September 29 - October 5, 1863

Compiled by Jim Hachtel, President 

Gen. William T. Sherman Memorial Civil War Roundtable

September 29, 1863 - Confederate Cavalry under General John S. Williams overruns and takes the Union position at Jonesborough, Tennessee.

September 30, 1863 - On the Sanibel River, Florida, the USS Rosalie captures the British blockade runner "Dictator."

October 1, 1863 - President Lincoln sends this message to General John M. Schofield, Union Commander in Missouri: "Your immediate duty, in regard to Missouri, now is to advance the efficiency of that establishment and to so use, as far as practicable, to compel the excited people there to leave one another alone." In Lincoln's view, the time had come where civilian rule and domestic tranquility should replace the guerrilla warfare.

October 1, 1863 - General Robert Ransom arrives in Jonesboro, Tennessee and directs General Williams to use his 1,700-man Confederate cavalry troop to seize the Cumberland Gap. General Williams moves through the Cumberland Gap and occupies Greenville, exceeding his orders.

October 1, 1863 - General Joseph Hooker reaches Nashville, Tennessee and awaits the arrival of his XI and XII Corps.

October 1, 1863 - Colonel George Crook, commanding the 4th Ohio Cavalry at Smith's Cross Roads, Tennessee, skirmishes with General Joseph Wheeler's 4,000 Confederate cavalry. Wheeler is trying to disrupt Union supply lines. Marauding Southerners capture a large Federal wagon train.

October 2, 1863 - The XI and XII Corps reach Bridgeport, Alabama after an impressive journey by rail. They are about 50 miles from Chattanooga.

October 2, 1863 - General Joseph Wheeler's cavalry attacks a Union supply train in the Sequatchie Valley, Tennessee and captures 800 wagons, 1,200 prisoners, and 4,000 mules.

October 2, 1863 - The Army of the Cumberland begins to suffer food shortages in Chattanooga.

October 3, 1863 - President Lincoln designates the last Thursday in November as Thanksgiving Day.

October 3, 1863 - Ex-slaves are authorized to enlist in Maryland, Tennessee, and Missouri by order of Secretary of War Edwin Stanton.

October 3, 1863 - Union batteries on Morris Island, Charleston Harbor, South Carolina end the bombardment of the remnants of Ft. Sumter after 560 more shells are directed toward that target.

October 3, 1863 - Union forces are compelled to withdraw from Greenville, Tennessee after General John Williams' cavalry attacks General Samuel P. Carter's cavalry troops. McMinnville, Tennessee is seized by General John A. Warton's 2,500 Confederate Cavalrymen who take 585 Union prisoners.

October 3, 1863 - In the west, General William B. Franklin leads his 19,500 Union XIX Corps from Berwick Bay, Louisiana westward toward Fort Bisland, Louisiana. General Cadwaller C. Washburn moves his XIII Corps from Berwick to Bayou Carrion Crow. Both columns plan to move up to Bayou Tech as far as Lafayette and then into Texas.

October 5, 1863 - General Hooker's XI and XII Corps arrive at the besieged city of Chattanooga. Lead elements of XV Corps from Vicksburg also arrive.

October 5, 1863 - At Charleston Harbor, South Carolina, the low silhouette torpedo boat "CSS David" steams out of the harbor to attack the USS New Ironside. One special feature of the "CSS David" is an exploding spar used to jab an enemy ship at or below the waterline. As the Confederate ship approaches the New Ironside, she is hit by small arms fire as the Union crew defends. The spar explosive is detonated and both ships are damaged. The CSS David's boilers are extinguished by the blast and she is dead in the water alongside the New Ironside. The boilers are eventually relit and the "CSS David" steams away. Admiral Dahlgren anticipates further attacks.