Sunday, November 23, 2014

Civil War - 150 Years ago this week - November 23-29, 1864

November 23,1864-As General Hood continues the march toward Columbia, Tennessee, skirmishes break out at Fouche Springs, Henryville, and Mount Pleasant, Tennessee.

November 23,1864-The two wings of General Sherman's army converge on Milledgeville, Georgia where state militia and the Federal's engage in more fighting. Additional fighting takes place at Ball's Ferry and at the Georgia Central railroad bridge over the Oconee River.

November 24,1864-Union General Jacob D. Cox, in charge of General Schofield's lead unit, arrives in Columbia, Tennessee just in time to assist the Federal Cavalry troops against General Forrest's Confederate Cavalry, driving them off.

November 25,1864-Southern arsonists under orders from agents in Canada set fire to ten hotels, two downtown theaters, several other buildings, and P.T. Barnum's Museum in New York City. None of the fires resulted in serious damage as they were quickly extinguished. In February, 1865 Confederate Captain Robert Cobb Kennedy, an escapee from Johnson's Island prison and the only arsonist identified, was arrested for setting the Barnum Museum blaze. He was executed on March 23,1865.

November 26,1864-Sanderson, Georgia is the site of more skirmishing between Confederates and elements of Sherman's army.

November 26,1864-In the Nebraska Territory, fighting between Federal soldiers and local Indians sympathetic to the Confederacy takes place at Plum Creek Station and Spring Creek.

November 27,1864-The siege of Petersburg continues. On the James River, the steamer Greyhound, General Benjamin Butler's floating headquarters, is damaged by a coal torpedo believed to have been planted by southern saboteurs.

November 27,1864-General Schofield moves his forces north of the Duck River some 25 miles south of Franklin, Tennessee and burns bridges behind his move. The Confederates of General Hood are believed to be planning their attack from the south.

November 28,1864-Union General John P. Hatch marches 5,500 men from Hilton Head, South Carolina to transports waiting off shore. Sailing down the Broad River, he intends to land at Boyd's Neck and march overland to cut the Savannah and Charleston Railroad to stop Confederate troops from moving from Charleston to Savannah as General Sherman approaches that city.

November 28,1864-Confederate General Thomas L. Rosser leads his cavalry troops on a raid into Maryland where they destroy a bridge on the B&O Railroad. They then move back up the valley into Virginia.

November 28,1864-General Hood deploys part of his force south of Columbia, Tennessee to give the impression that he will attack from the south. He then shifts the bulk of his army east to cross the Duck River above the town and cut off any Union retreat. General Schofield withdraws his Union force across the Duck River before the trap is sprung. Schofield is alerted by Union Cavalry General James Wilson when General Nathan Forrest's Cavalry surprises Wilson at Spring Hill and drives his cavalry toward Franklin in defeat.

November 29-30,1864-General John P. Hatch with a brigade of infantry, a brigade of sailors, and eight cannon marches from Boyd's Neck, South Carolina toward Grahamville. The predominately black soldiers are from the Massachusetts 54th and 55th plus the 32nd, 34th and 35th U.S. Colored Troops. Mislead by poor maps, the Federals march and counter march aimlessly for several hours at night. When the Confederates arrive, the battle, sometimes called the battle of Honey Hill, is a disaster for the Union with 89 killed, 629 wounded and 29 missing. Light losses were recorded by the Confederates.