This Day in the Civil War

Thursday April 25 1861

Missouri was on the verge of secession, and St. Louis held one of the largest Federal arsenals west of the Appalachians. The Union needed those guns to equip the troops who would soon be flooding into Cairo. Captain Stokes, with a few soldiers, was given orders and a steamship and set forth. The party landed in the middle of the night and started hauling guns. They got more than 10,000 muskets and quite a few other stores and were gone before the secessionists knew what had happened.

Friday, April 25 1862

Yesterday his fleet eliminated the problem of the Mississippi downstream forts by running past them in the night. Today Admiral David Farragut, with eleven ships, pulled up to the docks of New Orleans. He didn’t tie up, for the excellent reason that the waterfront was on fire, set by the people of the town. The unfinished gunboat CSS Mississippi came floating past, burned to keep her from the Yankees.

Saturday, April 25 1863

Hard Times Landing, Mississippi, lived up to its name today as Gen. U.S. Grant came to town. Deciding that Vicksburg could not be immediately attacked, he had decided to leapfrog the city and take everything around it. Other fighting occurred in Fort Bowie, Arizona Territory; Greenland Gap, West Virginia, and Webber’s Falls, Indian Territory (later known as Oklahoma)

Monday April 25 1864

The orders continued to come down from William T. Sherman’s headquarters office. Yesterday the orders were to prepare to march on short notice, without tents, and with the men carrying most of their rations for a month. Today he sent a request to Fleet Captain Pennock, in command at Cairo, Il., requesting that additional patrols be put on from the Ohio River to the Tennessee River. With Sherman going into Georgia, the lines of communication and supply on the Tennessee would be in jeopardy.

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