Friday, November 22, 2013

February 19 - 25, 1862

Compiled by Jim Hachtel, President
Gen. William T. Sherman Memorial Civil War Roundtable

February 19, 1862 - The Confederate Congress meeting at Richmond orders the release of 2,000 Federal Troops.

February 19, 1862 - Federal General Charles F. Smith occupies Clarksville, Tennessee and Fort Defiance. Commodore Andrew Foote assists and the Confederates evacuate as Foote's squadron approaches. Foote urges General Smith to move on Nashville while the Cumberland River is still high.

February 19, 1862 - The USS Monitor, under testing in New York Harbor, encounters propulsion defects.

February 19, 1862 - The USS Delaware and USS Commodore Perry move down the Chowan River in North Carolina, encounter resistance at Winston, and withdraw.

February 20, 1862 - At the White House, President Abraham Lincoln's 11-year old son William Wallace ("Willie") dies of typhoid fever.

February 20, 1862 - The Confederate Congress authorizes the evacuation of troops from Columbus, Kentucky with Forts Henry and Donelson both lost.

February 20, 1862 - Tennessee Governor Isham Harris moves the Confederate State Capitol to Memphis from Nashville as Nashville is threatened by Union forces.

February 20, 1862 - General John Wool, Union force commander at Ft. Monroe, receives intelligence that the ironclad CSS Virginia is being deployed against his position.

February 20, 1862 - General Albert Sidney Johnston completes the move of Confederate forces to Murfreesboro, Tennessee and combines the scattered forces arriving from Nashville.

February 21, 1862 - The Committee on the Conduct of the War removes Colonel Charles P. Stone from command and arrests him for betraying troops in the defeat of the Union at Ball's Bluff in October 1861. He remains imprisoned for 189 days and becomes an example of the power of the Committee. Stone is eventually pardoned and released.

February 21, 1862 - In New York City convicted slave trader Nathaniel Gordon is hanged, the first punished for this outlawed practice.

February 22, 1862 - President Jefferson Davis becomes the first elected official of the Confederate States of America. He blames the North for the hostilities and condemns the North's stand on states rights as a violation of the Constitution in his acceptance speech. President Davis and his Vice President Alexander Stevens were formerly provisional officers.

February 22, 1862 - General Don C. Buell moves the Army of Ohio from Bowling Green, Kentucky toward Nashville.

February 23, 1862 - President Lincoln appoints U.S. Senator Andrew Johnson of Tennessee as Military Governor of pro-Union eastern Tennessee.

February 23, 1862 - New commander of the Department of the Gulf for the Union is General Benjamin Butler.

February 23, 1862 - Confederate forces under Nathan Bedford Forrest evacuate ahead of The Army of Ohio advance on Nashville. The North holds Nashville throughout the war.

February 23, 1862 - Harper's Ferry, Virginia is reoccupied by the Union and General Nathaniel P. Banks.

February 24, 1862 - The CSS Virginia ironclad is ordered to move against Union naval forces off Hampton Roads by the Confederate secretary of the navy, Stephen R. Mallory. Captain Franklin Buchanan is the commander.

February 24, 1862 - Confederates are victorious at the Battle of Valverde, New Mexico thanks to Texas Troops led by General Henry H. Sibley.

February 24, 1862 - As President Lincoln's Cabinet meeting ends, newly appointed Department of The Gulf Commander General Benjamin Butler said, "Goodbye, Mr. President. We shall take New Orleans, or you will never see me again."

February 25, 1862 - President Lincoln approves the Legal Tender Act, the first government sponsored paper money system. The new "greenbacks" are intended for wartime use to expedite payment of Treasury Department bills. There are 400 million in circulation by war's end.

February 25, 1862 - The War Department is authorized to commandeer all commercial telegraph lines for military use, if needed.

February 25, 1862 - The new Union ironclad USS Monitor is commissioned at Long Island, Lt. John L. Wooden, Commanding. The revolutionary design features a single rotating turret with two 11-inch Dahlgren smoothbore cannons, and the body of the ship submerged underwater.