This Day in the Civil War

Saturday July 27 1861
MCCLELLAN MAKES MANASSAS MOVEMENT

George McClellan achieved the goal today for which he had struggled, connived and exerted every bit of political leverage he could muster. No, it had nothing to do with contact with the Confederates, the struggle was to get to the top of the military heap, which in these days was command of the Army of the Potomac. His commander in chief expanded on a memo he had written right after the debacle of the Battle of Manassas. Detailing the moves which should be made to put down the rebellion as quickly as possible, he suggested Union moves on Manassas Junction and Strasburg in Virginia, Memphis to be attacked from Cairo, Il., and a move from Cincinnati on east Tennessee. As the supposedly neutral Kentucky stood in the way of the latter, there would prove to be difficulties.



Sunday July 27 1862
TOONE’S TRIBULATIONS TROUBLE TENNESSEE

It was yet another day of minor skirmishes here and there, but no preparation for, recovery from, or conduct of major battles or operations. Some of these were in connection with what was known as “operations”--more than an exploration but less than a planned battle. One such proceeded from Rienzi to Ripley, Miss.; another one went for a couple of days between Woodville to Guntersville, Ala. One action big enough to be classified as at least a “skirmish” took place at Toone’s Station (also known as Lower Post Ferry), Tennessee.



Monday July 27 1863
YANCEY YIELDS YANKEE YOKE

William Lowndes Yancey died this day in Montgomery, Alabama, a frustrated man. His history is interesting: he was Southern born. After his father died his mother remarried an avid abolitionist and the family moved to New York. Yancey lived there until he was a student at Williams College in Massachusetts when he abruptly dropped out and moved back South to read law under an old friend of his father. He was an orator of some note, and so devoted to the South that he was advocating secession years before the events of Ft. Sumter actually occurred. His ambition was always to be President of a Southern Confederacy, but he was too radical even for them and was passed over in favor of Jefferson Davis. He spent the war years in a “loyal opposition” working to restrain even what limited powers Davis had.



Wednesday July 27 1864
HOOKER, HUFFY, HASTENS HIBERNATION

It was a game of musical chairs at the headquarters of the Union Army of the Tennessee today. Gen. John “Black Jack” Logan, head of this force, had compiled a solid record for a man with no military training whatsoever, and was going to accompany William T. Sherman to Atlanta and beyond. This left the army command open and today this prize went to Oliver O. Howard, who was compiling a much better record in the West than he had with the 11th Corps of the Army of the Potomac in the East. The one with his nose most out of joint was Gen. Joseph “Fighting Joe” Hooker, who got his nickname from a newspaper typo rather than any battlefield accomplishment. Hooker, currently a corps commander, felt that since his commission predated Howards’, he should get the job. He was in fact in such a snit that he quit the army altogether.

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