Chronological History of the American Civil War

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Friday, January 23, 1863 : General Burnside (U.S.) sent a request to Lincoln that Generals Joseph Hooker, William B. Franklin, W. F. Smith and others be fired, demoted, or transferred. Hooker, in particular Burnside wanted removed from the service altogether. Lincoln quietly ignored the tirade, and the orders were never acted upon. Saturday, January 24, 1863 : General Burnside met with President Lincoln and personally gives him the list of those he wanted dismissed. Burnside told Lincoln, if he did not get the support of the President, he would tender his own resignation. Sunday, January 25, 1863 : General Ambrose Burnside (U.S.) his army back now in winter quarters after the disaster of the “Mud March,” met today with Lincoln in Washington, D.C., and after refusing to dismiss many of Burnside's subordinate officers; Burnside in frustration offers to resign. The president accepted his resignation and orders Major General Joseph “Fighting Joe” Hooker, (U.S.) to relieve Major General Ambrose E. Burnside, in command of the Army of the Potomac (U.S.). Union patrols leave from Bolivar to scout between there and Ripley, Mississippi. Monday, January 26, 1863 : General Hooker (U.S.) assumed command of the Army of the Potomac, and he received a letter from President Lincoln. While praising Hooker’s abilities, Lincoln warned him against becoming a victim of the same sort of backstabbing that Hooker himself had practiced against Burnside. Hooker had reportedly said that the country needed a dictator. Lincoln wrote: “Only generals who gain success can set up as dictators. What I ask of you is military success, and I will risk the dictatorship.” The War Department authorizes Massachusetts governor to recruit freed blacks for troops. Tuesday, January 27, 1863 : A Union naval force led by the monitor-type U.S.S. Montauk , attacked the Confederate position at Fort McAllister. The fortress was a powerfully-built earthwork on the Ogeechee River just south of Savannah, Georgia. The Union boats fired their cannons on the fort for several hours. After not making any progress, the Union boats decided to withdraw. Without any land forces to support the naval bombardment, the Union was once again unable to secure a victory. Near Germantown, Tennessee, the Confederate Cavalry stage a surprise attack on a Union forage train. Wednesday, January 28, 1863 : General Hooker (U.S.) as new commander of the Army of the Potomac, was told that desertions were at 200 men a day, nearly 1500 a week or 6000 a month. General Hood was also not popular with senior officers, as he had played a major part in undermining General McClellan’s (U.S.) position, when McClellan was commander of the Army of the Potomac. General Hooker splits his army into, and sends half up the Rappahannock River at

Fredericksburg, Virginia to cross the river. Col. John S. Mosby (CSA) (pictured) “The Gray Ghost” and his Confederate Mosby’s Raiders are near the town of Chantilly, Virginia. Ahead of them were a party of Union vendettes, the mounted pickets of the 18th Pennsylvania Cavalry (U.S.). Mosby deployed his men, and at a signal the Confederates charged forward into the Federals. The Confederates grabbed 9 Federals, including their horses and weapons. They just as quickly disappeared back into the woods. Mosby would become famous for his “ghostly” attacks and abilities to disappear without capture. Mosby, much later in life, would be-friend future WWII war General George Patton as a child, and teach him about his daring raids and stunning cavalry attacks .

Thursday, January 29, 1863 : General Ulysses S. Grant (U.S.) is placed in command of the Army of the West, with orders to capture Vicksburg, Mississippi. A massacre happen today in the Utah Territory near present-day Preston, Idaho, as Shoshone Indian raids under Chief Bear Hunter during the winter of 1862-63 had provoked Federal retaliation. Troops under Col. Patrick E. Connor (U.S.) set out from Fort Douglas, Utah, in the deep snow of January 1863, towards Chief Bear Hunter's camp. The Federals engaged the Indians on the Bear River, or Battle Creek, in the Utah Territory, 140 miles from Camp Douglas. The Indians, had been murdering emigrants on the Overland Mail Route for the last 15 years; were winning early in the fight using guns until, they ran out of ammunition and resorted to bows and arrows. Over 220 Indians are reported killed, after killing most of the men and many of the children, soldiers were reported to have raped and assaulted many women.

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