Category Archives: Alabama

Book Review: The Half Has Never Been Told

The Half has Never Been Told: Slavery and the making of American capitalism, by Edward E. Baptist. New York: Basic Books, 2014. I can’t praise this book enough. Baptist has written one of the best history books I’ve ever read, … Continue reading

Posted in Alabama, Book Review, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Slavery | Leave a comment

January 17, 1865: Borrowing troops from the Army of the Tennessee?

I couldn’t follow everything about this exchange from what was in the official records, but apparently Beauregard and others agree that the Army of the Tennessee needs to be reorganized — not surprising, since it was pretty much destroyed by … Continue reading

Posted in Alabama, John Bell Hood, Pierre G.T. Beauregard, South Carolina, William J. Hardee | Leave a comment

October 4, 1864: Grant sides with Sherman

Yesterday, Halleck wrote to Grant to urge him (although he denied that was what he was doing) to send Sherman to Mobile rather than Savannah. Grant replies that Savannah is the only viable option now. Official Records: CONFIDENTIAL.] HDQRS. ARMIES … Continue reading

Posted in Alabama, Georgia, Henry Halleck, Mobile, Sherman's March, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

October 2, 1864: Halleck doesn’t like Sherman’s plan

Sherman wrote to Grant yesterday that he views Hood’s advance northward as leaving Georgia open to attack. He has floated the idea of heading for the Georgia capital, Milledgeville, and ultimately to Savannah. Back in August, he suggested that if … Continue reading

Posted in Alabama, Georgia, Henry Halleck, John Bell Hood, Mississippi, Mobile, Sherman's March, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

May 2, 1864: Stevenson demurs

General Stevenson isn’t too happy with the order to hold Decatur. He lacks the men and equipment. Official Records: HEADQUARTERS U. S. FORCES, Decatur, Ala., May 2, 1864. Major General J. B. McPHERSON, Commanding Dept. and Army of the Tennessee, … Continue reading

Posted in Alabama, James B. McPherson, John D. Stevenson | Leave a comment

April 17, 1864: Grant wants Banks to hit Mobile

Grant was always a bit ambivalent about the Red River expedition, and the last thing he wants is for it to delay his planned attack on Mobile. He is developing a plan in which Banks will attack Mobile while Sherman … Continue reading

Posted in Alabama, Arkansas, David Hunter, Mobile, Nathaniel P. Banks, Red River Campaign, Ulysses S. Grant | Leave a comment

February 22, 1864: Sherman’s forces “stalled” at Meridian

The Richmond Daily Dispatch takes some pleasure in the fact that Sherman’s Mississippi expedition has “stalled” at Meridian. As we’ve seen, that was the target all along, and Sherman has succeeded in destroying a vital rail link to Mobile. The … Continue reading

Posted in Alabama, Mississippi, Mobile, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

February 20, 1864: Yankee and Southern women

A couple of items in the Mobile Register and Advertiser juxtapose a story involving a southern woman with one about a Northern one, perhaps with some intent that a lesson be drawn. Yankee women dress like men and go to … Continue reading

Posted in Alabama, Gender, Mobile, Women | Leave a comment

January 25, 1864: Escaped prisoner is an armchair general

A self-styled Union man, escaped from rebel imprisonment, gives Grant some very detailed military advice. Official Records: NASHVILLE, TENN., January 25, 1864. Major General U. S. GRANT, Commanding Grand Division of Mississippi: A refugee from Alabama, having escaped out of … Continue reading

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January 17, 1864: You sure, Grant?

It appears this letter from Halleck may have passed Grant’s letter of January 15 in the mail, as Grant has already told Halleck that he wants Sherman to move on Selma and Meridian. Halleck is concerned because many troops are … Continue reading

Posted in Alabama, Henry Halleck, Mississippi, Tennessee, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment