Thursday Jan. 9 1862
LINCOLN LAMENTS LOATHESOME LETHARGY
Some weeks ago Abraham Lincoln had started sending letters and
telegrams to his two senior commanding generals in the Western
Theater, Don Carlos Buell and Henry Halleck, asking when, in their
opinions, they would be ready to carry the battle against the enemy.
Specifically he was looking at them to carry out the Western half of
the Anaconda Plan to strangle the Confederacy by recapturing the
Mississippi River. To Lincoln’s increasing annoyance, he wasn’t
getting dates far in the future, because he wasn’t getting any
response at all. Today he complained about this during a meeting
with General of the Army George McClellan. This was ironic, because
McClellan would prove to be the worst procrastinator of them all.
Friday Jan. 9 1863
MISCELLANEOUS MILITARY MOVES MAKE MUDDLE
There was little of a particularly aggressive nature going on today.
In the Federal West, the Army of the Cumberland, Gen. Rosecrans
commanding, was reorganized into three corps, one each for George
Thomas, Alexander McCook and Thomas Crittenden. None of the three
corps was in a position to do anything about the Union garrison at
Hartville, Mo, which was compelled to surrender to the Confederate
forces of Gen. Marmaduke. Considerably further South, there was a
to-do in the area south of St. Joseph’s, Fla., when the USS “Ethan
Allen” sailed up. There was little fighting but much destruction:
the “Allen” was on a mission to destroy the salt manufacturers and
all their equipment and reserves. The one they got today was said to
be producing 75 bushels of salt per day and selling it all at a good
price in Richmond.
Saturday Jan. 9 1864
NAVAL NASTINESS NEARS NOTABILITY
There was little hostile action on any front today (with the
exception of a very tiny skirmish at the equally tiny Terman’s
Ferry, Ky.) but the rumors were vast and numerous. They were also
mostly naval: in Washington, Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles
received a disturbing telegram from Admiral C.H. Bell in California.
According to Bell, he had himself just received word that the
Confederates were constructing a large new raider in an unexpected
place, Vancouver, British Columbia. Welles’ agents had largely
blocked Southern attempts to get ships in Europe, but had overlooked
the Canadian option. In Richmond, Jefferson Davis was sending notice
to commanders in Alabama, Mississippi and Georgia that Admiral
Farragut was preparing to attack Mobile.
Monday Jan. 9 1865
SLAVERY SUPPORT SWIFTLY SLIPPING
In Washington the debate on the 13th Amendment to outlaw slavery
everywhere in America was heating up. The bill had already passed
the Senate easily but was having a harder time in the more volatile
House. Lincoln was putting pressure everywhere he could to move the
matter along, and day by day more Congressmen signed on in support.
In Tennessee, the state’s control by Union forces was considered
strong enough that a Constitutional Convention was allowed to be
held, and today they too adopted an amendment abolishing slavery in
the state. It next had to be put to a vote of the people, or at
least male people.
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