Wednesday July 31 1861
MISSOURI MAKES MOMENTOUS MOVE
Missouri, as both a border state and a Western one, could have
easily gone either way as a Confederate or Union ally. Legally
elected Gov. Claiborne Jackson had endeavored to speed up the
process by simply declaring the state for secession. Thanks to Gen.
Nathaniel Lyon and Francis Blair Jr., Jackson was no longer governor
but a refugee with Confederate forces in Arkansas. A new convention
wa hastily held and Hamilton R. Gamble was inaugurated as his
replacement. He made a patriotic speech.
Thursday July 31 1862
POPE’S POLICY PROVOKES PETULANCE
Negotiations had been underway for some time to work out a formal
agreement, or cartel, for the exchange of prisoners. Jefferson Davis
wrote to Robert E. Lee that the agreement was in place: with one
exception. Gen. John “One pinch of owl dung” Pope had recently
issued orders punishing Virginia citizens for depredations committed
by Confederate soldiers on his Army of Virginia, and threatening to
shoot any civilians caught crossing the lines. Davis told Lee that
any prisoners taken from Pope’s forces were to be treated as common
criminals, not prisoners of war. Lee used this only rarely.
Friday July 31 1863
RAIDER RACES REACHING REPAIRS
The commerce raiders of the Confederacy, although capturing or
sinking relatively little of the commerce directed at Northern
ports, had one curious effect: by driving insurance rates so high
that they caused owners to re-register their vessels under the flags
of other countries, they reduced United States flag shipping to
levels that were never restored to this day. One of the fiercest,
CSS Florida, was now two days out of Bermuda on course for the
repair yards of Brest, France. Her skipper, Commander Maffitt, was
ill and had requested that a replacement be sent over.
Sunday July 31 1864
CONFEDERATE CAVALRY CONFLAGRATES CHAMBERSBURG
Gen. Jubal Early’s Confederate cavalry had been on an extended raid
into the North, attempting to force Lincoln to pull forces away from
Grant’s siege of Petersburg, Va. He had gone to the gates of
Washington and been driven off. He had gone as far as Chambersburg
in Pennsylvania, demanded a ransom, and when it was not paid, burned
a good part of the city. Today he was suddenly under attack by Gen.
Averel’s Federal cavalry and headed for Cumberland, Md.
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