Monthly Archives: December 2014

December 31, 1864: Black troops will garrison Savannah

Halleck has already urged Sherman to make a gesture toward the well-being of escaped slaves to improve his PR with northern abolitionists. Now a related dispute arises; Halleck wants able-bodied former slaves who followed Sherman to continue to serve as … Continue reading

Posted in Contrabands, Georgia, Henry Halleck, John G. Foster, Savannah, Sherman's March, U.S. Colored Troops, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

December 30, 1864: Sherman and the “negroes”

News of the incident at Ebenezer Creek, where Jeff C. Davis took up the pontoon bridge, abandoning hundreds of escaped slaves to recapture by Wheeler’s cavalry or drowning, has reached the north. Sherman is under considerable criticism from abolitionists in … Continue reading

Posted in Abolitionism, Contrabands, Georgia, Henry Halleck, Savannah, Sherman's March, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

December 29: Porter invites Sherman to come take Fort Fisher

Admiral Porter writes to Sherman that he hopes Sherman hurries to North Carolina to take Fort Fisher, after Butler bungled it. Apparently Porter doesn’t have a very high opinion of political generals. Unfortunately I think that Porter is unaware of … Continue reading

Posted in David Porter, North Carolina, Sherman's March, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

December 28, 1864: Seceding from the Confederacy

Sherman responds to a group of Unionist Georgians who wish to put themselves under the protection of the Union forces. Other sources note that Tattnall County, one of the two mentioned here, was anti-secession from the start. Official Records: HEADQUARTERS … Continue reading

Posted in Georgia, Secession, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

December 27, 1864: Slaves will fight for their beloved masters

The Richmond Daily Dispatch gleefully reports that an opposition paper in the North says that slaves have more reason to fight for the south than the north, especially since they have such affectionate attachment to their masters. Somehow this never … Continue reading

Posted in Abolitionism, Black Confederates | Leave a comment

December 27, 1864: Grant talks strategy with Sherman

Grant is now enthusiastically backing Sherman’s plan to march through the Carolinas up to meet him at Richmond. In a long dispatch, he outlines the grand strategy and how he views the role of Sherman’s army in it. Official Records: … Continue reading

Posted in Georgia, North Carolina, Sherman's March, South Carolina, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

December 26, 1864: Thank you note from Lincoln

Lincoln thanks Sherman for his Christmas present quite graciously: “the honor is all yours; for I believe none of us went further than to acquiesce”. Stanton wishes Sherman had captured Hardee’s army. Official Records: EXECUTIVE MANSION, Washington, December 26, 1864. … Continue reading

Posted in Abraham Lincoln, Georgia, Savannah, Sherman's March, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

Christmas, 1864: The New York skating pond report

From Harper’s Weekly — Skating Carnival, Brooklyn 1862 *********************************************** The New York Times publishes its review of the various skating ponds in the area, starting with the Captioline Lake and Union Pond in Brooklyn. Capitoline Lake Skating This favorite skating … Continue reading

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December 24, 1864: Sherman to Grant

Sherman responds to Grant, happy that he doesn’t have to send his troops north by ship, and making plans for his assault on South Carolina. Is Charleston worth taking — for the symbolic significance if nothing else? Official Records: HEADQUARTERS … Continue reading

Posted in Savannah, Sherman's March, South Carolina, Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman | Leave a comment

December 23, 1864: News of Hood

The Richmond Daily Dispatch discusses what Hood is doing after the defeat at Nashville. They’re skeptical, but it doesn’t really sound too good. From Hood’s army. The latest intelligence from the “pursuit” of General Hood is from Nashville on the … Continue reading

Posted in George Thomas, John Bell Hood, Tennessee | Leave a comment