“I have up to the present time received over 3,000 of our men”: Prisoner exchanges in November 1864 upriver from Fort Pulaski

One of the long standing myths associated with the Civil War is that Lieutenant-General U.S. Grant stopped exchanges mid-way through the war.  This normally offered as a blanket statement.  And the lack of exchanges is then cited as causing the swelling prison population.  As I’ve discussed at length during the sesquicentennial, the Federals curtailed exchangesContinue reading ““I have up to the present time received over 3,000 of our men”: Prisoner exchanges in November 1864 upriver from Fort Pulaski”

“In anticipation of the crossing of the James…”: Engineers begin preparing for Grant’s move 150 years ago

In the evening of June 11, Lieutenant-General U.S. Grant sent a dispatch to Major-General Benjamin F. Butler, commanding the Army of the James on the south side of the James River.  In part, that message read: The movement to transfer [the Army of the Potomac] to the south side of the Jame River will commenceContinue reading ““In anticipation of the crossing of the James…”: Engineers begin preparing for Grant’s move 150 years ago”

“Boyle would have been hung”: The scapegoat for Butler’s failed raid

Yes, the Battle of Morton’s Ford was a diversion … poorly conceived diversion at that.  A diversion from what? In late January and early February 1864, Major-General Benjamin Butler, commanding the Army of the James on the Virginia Peninsula, gained information that the Confederate garrison of Richmond was weakened to support operations in North Carolina. Continue reading ““Boyle would have been hung”: The scapegoat for Butler’s failed raid”