Thursday May 16 1861
TENNESSEE TAKES TUMULTUOUS TURN
The State of Tennessee was officially and ceremoniously admitted to
the Confederate States of America today. The Confederate Congress
took the action at its meeting place in Montgomery, Ala., which was
the capital of the secessionist nation at this time. The first
capital would not be the capital much longer. To encourage the
secession of Virginia it was decided to move the Confederate seat of
government to Richmond.
Friday, May 16 1862
OCCUPATION ORDERS OFTEN OFFENSIVE
U.S. Gen. Benjamin Butler had a habit of making friends wherever he
went. His current assignment was as commander of the military
occupation of New Orleans. Yesterday he had issued his infamous
“woman order”, directing that ladies who were disrespectful to Union
soldiers would be treated as common prostitutes were treated. Today
he merely closed one of the city’s newspapers (the "Bee") and put
the other, the "Delta" under new management, his own.
Saturday May 16 1863
COTTON CERTIFICATES CREATE COMMERCE
James D. Bullock was on a mission in Europe to commission the
building of warships for the Confederate government. His only
problem was that he had no immediate means to pay for these vessels.
Trying to get the work done completely on credit had got him laughed
out of England, so he was trying his luck in France. There too, he
wrote to Navy Sec. Malloy today, “..the French builders, like the
English, wanted money, and were not willing to lay down the ships
unless I could give them security in the shape of cotton
certificates.” These were essentially bonds payable in bales of
cotton instead of money.
Monday May 16 1864
DARLING DREWRY DEFENSES DUPLICATED
Three years ago yesterday the Union army launched its first attack
on Fort Darling on Drewry’s Bluff on the James River. It failed.
Today another attempt was made, this time by land instead of by
ship. Beauregard’s Confederates were actually unsuccessful in
breaking any Union lines, but poor communication and inept
leadership caused the Federals to pull back anyway. Richmond was
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