16.3 No End in Sight. Union Victories in the West. Ulysses S. Grant was a successful general in the West. His strategy: Find out where your enemy is, get at him as soon as you can, strike at him as hard as you can, and keep moving on.
16.3 No End in Sight
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Ulysses S. Grant was a successful general in the West.
His strategy: Find out where your enemy is, get at him as soon as you can, strike at him as hard as you can, and keep moving on.
In Feb., 1862 Grant took control of Fort Donelson in northwestern Tennessee.
This was the first step in trying to cut off river transportation in the South.
Grant then went on to take Fort Henry, and finally Nashville.
The Battle of Shiloh
After Grant’s victories in Tennessee, Confederate leader Albert Sidney Johnston ordered a retreat to Corinth, Mississippi.
True to his word, Grant chased after Johnston.
On April 6, 1862, Johnston and his troops surprised Grant near Shiloh Church (Battle of Shiloh)
Johnston is killed in this battle.
During the night, Grant received a fresh supply of troops and he forced the Southern troops to retreat the next day.
Union casualties: 13,000
Confederate casualties: 11,000
Congress was distressed over the Union casualties and wanted Grant removed because of the high casualties, but Lincoln (commander in chief) was thrilled that he had finally found a general who would take the fight to the Rebels.
The Fall of New Orleans
On April 25, 1862, David Farragut captured New Orleans.
This was a problem for the South because it was one more step towards control of the Mississippi.
This left only 150 miles of the Mississippi that was controlled by the Confederacy.
The remaining obstacle to Union control was Vicksburg, Mississippi.
Lee Claims Victories in the East
In the spring of 1862, McClellan finally made a move to capture Richmond (this would be the second attempt).
McClellan succeeded in getting to within a few miles of the city.
One problem: in June, 1862, Robert E. Lee took charge of the Army of Northern Virginia and turned the tables on McClellan. This was known as the Seven Days’ Battles because the two fought for a week with the end result that
McClellan suffered fewer casualties, but he ran back out of Virginia and didn’t chase Lee down.
Lee Invades the North
Lee was feeling pretty confident with himself and so decided to attack the North.
He had good reasons:
1)the North was already dispirited about the disaster at Richmond
2)Lee hoped that a successful attack in the North would bring Lincoln to the bargaining table
3)taking the fight to northern soil would keep it off Virginia farmland where it was time to harvest crops
4)he was hoping it would be like the Battle of Saratoga and a solid win would encourage Europe to help out
After Lee left Maryland he drew up detailed battle plans for his northern invasion.
Somehow one of his officers accidentally left those plans wrapped around three cigars at a campsite and POOF!
When Union troops came through the area and happened across that very campsite, the plans were found!
This gave McClellan a golden opportunity that even he could not pass up.
September 17, 1862, the two armies met at the Battle of Antietam and Lee was forced to retreat back to Virginia.
25,000 (12,000 for the North)casualties in one battle.
Unlike Grant, McClellan did not pursue Lee and Lincoln was so disgusted with him that he removed him and replaced him with Grant.