Friday, November 22, 2013

October 20 - 26, 1863

Compiled by Jim Hachtel, President 

Gen. William T. Sherman Memorial Civil War Roundtable

October 20, 1863 - At Murrell's Inlet, North Carolina, the crew of the USS T. A. Ward sends a party ashore to locate fresh water. The party is surprised by Confederate cavalry and 10 men are captured.

October 20, 1863 - Union General Cadwallader Colden Washburn is named commander of the XIII Corps in Mississippi. Prior to the Civil War, several Washburn brothers started Washburn Flour Company, forerunner of General Mills.

October 21, 1863 - Opelousas, Louisiana is occupied by Union forces under General William B. Franklin. This is the end point of the Bayou Teche operation.

October 22, 1863 - Major John S. Mosby's partisan rangers are overrun near Annandale, Virginia.

October 22, 1863 - Admiral David D. Porter advises General William T. Sherman that no steamer should be allowed to dock at any ports except military or gunboat protected ports. This after the unescorted Union steamer 'Mist' is destroyed by Confederate guerrillas at Ship Island, Mississippi.

October 23, 1863 - General Leonidas Polk is relieved of command as corps commander of the Army of Tennessee by President Jefferson Davis and replaced by General William Hardee. Tension between General Braxton Bragg and Polk led to this command change.

October 23, 1863 - General U. S. Grant arrives in Chattanooga and takes command of the Army of the Cumberland. General George Thomas accompanies Grant to study Confederate positions below Lookout Mountain. Grant then orders a new supply route west of Chattanooga from Bridgeport. This so-called "cracker line" weakens the Confederate siege. General Sherman's XV Corps and Joseph Hooker's XI and XII Corps are expected to arrive in Chattanooga within days.

October 24, 1863 - General Grant begins to extend the "cracker line" on the Tennessee River below Raccoon Mountain.

October 24, 1863 - General Grant names General William T. Sherman as commander of the Army of the Tennessee effective as soon as Sherman's army arrives in Chattanooga.

October 25, 1863 - Confederate forces led by General John S. Marmaduke occupy Pine Bluff, Arkansas.

October 26, 1863 - Union batteries again pound the remains of Fort Sumter firing 625 heavy rounds into the crumbled structure.

October 26, 1863 - General William B. Hazen of IV Corps directs the laying of a pontoon bridge across the Tennessee River at Brown's Ferry, opposite Raccoon Mountain and near Confederate outposts. A bridgehead is established when the 15th Alabama is routed by General John B. Turchin's brigade. The siege is broken.