December 21, 1864: Savannah’s surrender “exactly four years since the passage by the State of South Carolina of the secession act”

December 21, 1864, found Major-General William T. Sherman was on the USS Harvest Moon, in the company of Rear-Admiral John Dahlgren and still in transit from Port Royal to his base at King’s Bridge on the Ogeechee River.  Bad seas delayed passage, and necessitated a slower route closer to shore.  Sherman remained disconnected from hisContinue reading “December 21, 1864: Savannah’s surrender “exactly four years since the passage by the State of South Carolina of the secession act””

Savannah’s Siege, December 20, 1864: “The noise of the retreating enemy could plainly be heard”

For Lieutenant-General William Hardee, December 20, 1864 was a day of anticipation.  Had the pontoon bridge across the Savannah River been ready before dusk the day before, he would have started the evacuation of Savannah.  Instead, he looked to keep up the appearances of holding the city for just one more day and then evacuateContinue reading “Savannah’s Siege, December 20, 1864: “The noise of the retreating enemy could plainly be heard””

Savannah’s Siege, December 19, 1864: “await orders for the attack” Sherman says

One of the hardest missions a military formation can perform is a withdrawal across a river in close contact with the enemy.  Such was the task for Lieutenant-General William Hardee on December 19, 1864.  As he and General P.G.T. Beauregard had already made the decision to evacuate the Savannah garrison.  They set the trigger forContinue reading “Savannah’s Siege, December 19, 1864: “await orders for the attack” Sherman says”