This Day in the Civil War

Thursday, April 10 1862

Cockspur Island lies near the mouth of the Savannah River in Georgia. It held an installation named Ft. Pulaski, and it was commonly assumed that it would soon come under Union attack. Today Brig. Gen. Quincy Adams Gillmore, USA, was moving artillery onto Tybee Island nearby to accomplish exactly that. And it was no ordinary artillery, either. Ft. Pulaski was built of heavy brick, so instead of regular, smoothbore artillery new, long-range rifled guns, with penetrating shells, were being installed instead.

Friday, April 10 1863

President Jefferson Davis kicked off a campaign today which would be copied many times in later years by other presidents. He issued a call to his people to plant what a later day would call “victory gardens” on land which would normally be devoted to cotton, tobacco and other items usually sold for export. He pointed out that the union blockade prevented most exports, and the army as well as the people needed the food. The campaign was largely successful.

Sunday, April 10 1864

Admiral D. D. Porter and 17 ironclads and numerous other ships were steaming up the Red River today through central Louisiana. Their intent was to join Gen. Banks in Shreveport, La. with 10,000 of General Sherman’s best troops. The trip came to an abrupt halt one mile above Loggy Bayou, where the local Confederates had taken a huge boat, the New Falls City, and wedged it sideways across the stream. It had been broken in the middle, and a sand bar was building up beneath it. The perpetrators of the deed had the further gall to leave a poster on the City’s mast, tauntingly inviting the Union men to attend a fancy ball in Shreveport. Porter noted, with sardonic appreciation of the humor intended, that they were unable to accept.

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