Category Archives: Frederick Steele

April 25, 1864: Steele’s command grows

Nathan Kimball *********************************************** Steele, unlike Banks, was having some success in Arkansas. Gen. Kimball here informs him that Halleck has added Fort Smith to his command. He seems to be the de facto commander of the west side of the … Continue reading

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April 24, 1864: Sherman asks Steele what’s going on

Sherman can’t tell what’s happening in Arkansas and Louisiana, but he wants Steele to take charge in the far west. CONFIDENTIAL.] HDQRS. MIL. DIV. OF THE MISSISSIPPI, Nashville, Tenn., April 24, 1864. Major General STEELE, Commanding, Red River: GENERAL: My … Continue reading

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April 23, 1864: Sherman to Halleck

While Sherman seems to be holding out some hope to Grant that Banks and Steele might combine forces and accomplish something, his dispatch to Halleck just sounds disgusted. Official Records: NASHVILLE, TENN., April 23, 1864-12 midnight. (Received 2.45 a. m., … Continue reading

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April 16, 1864: Porter’s report to Sherman

Nathaniel Banks; not Porter’s favorite general. ************************************************************* Porter follows up on his brief dispatch with a lengthy report to Sherman. This unusually full and well-written document is notable in several ways. First, as before, Porter is disgusted with the management … Continue reading

Posted in Arkansas, David Porter, Frederick Steele, Nathaniel P. Banks, Red River Campaign, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

April 15, 1864: Futile struggling over the Red River

Apparently Sherman hasn’t yet received the dispatch from Porter saying that A.J.Smith’s troops will be late. He asks Grant to hurry Steele and hurries Steele himself, blaming Steele for the delay — in error, as it turns out. Meanwhile Banks … Continue reading

Posted in Arkansas, Frederick Steele, Nathaniel P. Banks, Red River Campaign, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

April 11, 1864: Banks to Steele — retreating

Banks gives Steele the bad news. His claim of victory on the 8th is overdrawn, but his troops did win a tactical victory on the 9th at Pleasant Hill. Nevertheless, the campaign is over, and they’ve retreated to Grand Ecore. … Continue reading

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March 13, 1864: Halleck passes the buck

As we’ve seen, Steele asked Halleck to overrule Sherman’s order to take all his troops to Shreveport. Halleck passes the decision on to Grant. Official Records: WASHINGTON, March 13, 1864-12.30 p.m. Lieutenant-General GRANT, Louisville, Ky.: General Steele telegraphs that Banks, … Continue reading

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March 12, 1864: Steele appeals to Halleck

Steele tries one more avenue to try to get out of sending all of his forces to Shreveport. This time, he goes over Sherman’s head to Halleck. Official Records: LITTLE ROCK, ARK., March 12, 1864-3 p.m. (Received 12.30 a.m., 13th.) … Continue reading

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March 10, 1864: Red River Campaign off to an inauspicious start

Nathaniel P. Banks **************************************88 First of all, Sherman has sent a substantial force to the Red River to help Banks and Steele. He wants them back in no more than 30 days, so he can put them to work in … Continue reading

Posted in Arkansas, David Porter, Frederick Steele, Louisiana, Nathaniel P. Banks, Red River Campaign, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

March 4, 1864: Sherman’s instructions to Banks and Steele

Sherman prepares to have Banks, Steele, and his own troops meet at Shreveport — always a tough trick to bring off. He emphasizes to both that moving on time is essential. He also reminds both that the whole expedition needs … Continue reading

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