American Civil War Fortifications. The Mississippi and River by Ron Field

By Ron Field

The Mississippi River performed a decisive position within the American Civil struggle. The accomplice fortifications that managed the decrease Mississippi valley have been positioned to the try out within the long Federal crusade of 1862-63. Vicksburg used to be a castle urban, often called the "Gibraltar of the Confederacy," whose trap is usually noticeable because the key to victory within the struggle. This publication explores the fortifications of the river valley, concentrating on Vicksburg and its defenses which boasted a community of forts, rifle pits, and cannon embrasures surrounding town and analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of the fortifications while lower than siege. additionally tested are various different fortified strongholds, together with New Orleans, Port Hudson, New Madrid and, forts Henry and Donelson, all lavishly illustrated with complete colour art and cutaways.

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An almost unremitting fire of sharpshooters was kept up during all hours of daylight during the whole time, varied by occasional brisk cannonading. " The Square Fort itself was garrisoned by elements of the 20th Alabama, commanded by Colonel Isham W. Garrott. This redoubt contained one 6-pounder and one 12-pounder howitzer, manned by Vaiden's Mississippi Battery, and another 12-pounder howitzer served by Waddell's Alabama Battery. Between June 16 and 17, 1863 the 20th Alabama suffered heavy casualties from the fire of Federal sharpshooters in rifle pits close to the fort.

Author's collection) The Union siege lines Several hundred yards away from the Confederate position and roughly parallel to it was a ridge system not so continuous and more broken than that occupied by Pemberton's forces. Along this line the Union Army took position and, following its failure to breach the Confederate defenses from 18-22 May, 1863, began siege operations. The aggregate length of the Union siege lines was 12 miles, and by June 30, 1863 contained 89 batteries mounting 220 guns. Lacking a sufficient number of siege pieces, the Federals also had to rely on light guns to shell the Confederate defenses.

Square Fort, aka Fort Garrott I. Salient Work or Horn Work J. South Fort Confederate River Batteries: K. Barnes Battery or Battery No. 13 L. Battery No. 12 M. Marine Hospital Battery or Battery No. 11 N. Battery No. 10 O. 8 P. 9 Q. Vaiden Battery R. Battery S. Whig Office Battery T. Wyman's Hill Battery U. 5 V. Battery No. 4 W. Devil's Backbone Battery X. Upper Water Battery Y. Pemberton's HQ ~ Union Siege Works: A. Battery Selfridge B. Battery Barrett C. Battery Hart D. Battery Jenney E. Battery Waterhouse F.

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