Skip to comments.This Day in Civil War History July 4th, 1863 Surrender of Vicksburg
Posted on 07/04/2010 6:02:56 AM PDT by mainepatsfan
Jul 4, 1863:
Surrender of Vicksburg
The Confederacy is torn in two when General John C. Pemberton surrenders to Union General Ulysses S. Grant at Vicksburg.
The Vicksburg campaign was one of the most successful campaigns of the war. Although Grant's first attempt to take the city failed in the winter of 1862-63, he renewed his efforts in the spring. Admiral David Porter had run his flotilla past the Vicksburg defenses in early May as Grant marched his army down the west bank of the river opposite Vicksburg, crossed back to Mississippi, and drove toward Jackson. After defeating a Confederate force near Jackson, Grant turned back to Vicksburg. On May 16, he defeated a force under John C. Pemberton at Champion Hill. Pemberton retreated back to Vicksburg, and Grant sealed the city by the end of May. In three weeks, Grant's men marched 180 miles, won five battles, and took 6,000 prisoners.
Grant made some attacks after bottling Vicksburg, but found the Confederates well entrenched. Preparing for a long siege, his army constructed 15 miles of trenches and enclosed Pemberton's force of 29,000 men inside the perimeter. It was only a matter of time before Grant, with 70,000 troops, captured Vicksburg. Attempts to rescue Pemberton and his force failed from both the east and west, and conditions for both military personnel and civilians deteriorated rapidly. Many residents moved to tunnels dug from the hillsides to escape the constant bombardments. Pemberton surrendered on July 4, and President Lincoln wrote that the Mississippi River "again goes unvexed to the sea."
The town of Vicksburg would not celebrate the Fourth of July for 81 years.
For some strange reason, Independence Day was not celebrated in Vicksburg for many decades after the War.
One of the two most brilliant strategic campaigns ever conducted in North America. And probably the best.
Virtual tour of Vicksburg Battlefield
Most of my schoolteachers fed me the Eastern battles over and over, but few touched on the Western theatre except for Shiloh. Finding out about dw's ancestor and researching such an obscure outfit helped to remedy some holes in my education.
(Gratuitous Independence Day observation: exactly one year later (July 4, 1864), the MMB saw action downriver at Coleman's Plantation.)
And yet most textbooks only mention the siege and largely ignore the campaign that led to it in the first place.
I’m currently reading a book on that very subject.
“One of the two most brilliant strategic campaigns ever conducted in North America.”
In your opinion, what was the other one? Grant’s Overland Campaign in 1864?
Grant's Road,,,(the one in Louisiana),,,
AFTER the slaves were set FREE hundreds of Blacks died
to build a road through the swamp NE of Ferriday,La.,,,
It made supplies easy to get North to South,,,
I learned to drive my Dad's Jeep on Grant's Road,,,
Grant was a Butcher,,,
He killed many civilians that had no cover...
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