Sunday, May 1, 2011

Opened The Way

A part of the Vicksburg Campaign, the Battle of Port Gibson was fought May 1st 1863.

In the spring of 1863, General Ulysses S Grant started his Vicksburg Campaign by moving his army south from Milliken’s Bend. He planed to cross the Mississippi at Grand Gulf, but the Union ships weren’t able to silence the Confederate guns there. The Union troops marched further south and crossed the river on April 30th 1863 at Bruinsburg, Mississippi. Advancing along the Rodney Road on May 1st 1863 moving toward Port Gibson, Grant’s troops under Brigadier General Eugene A Carr ran into Confederates shortly after midnight near the Shaifer House. They skirmished until after 3 am when the Union soldiers advanced along a plantation road at dawn. The Confederates engaged a Union advance at 5:30 am bringing on the Battle of Port Gibson. The Union side pushed the Confederate soldiers back. Several times during the day the Confederates established new lines of defense, but they could not hold off Grant’s men. The Confederates found they could not defend their line on the Mississippi River and retreated to the Bayou Pierre bottoms. This left the way to Vicksburg open for Grant’s army.

For more about this battle look at Peter Joseph Osterhaus's official report

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