From Across The River And Under Shade Trees

"Captain, my religious belief teaches me to feel as safe in battle as in bed. God has fixed the time for my death. I do not concern myself about that, but to be always ready, no matter when it may overtake me. That is the way all men should live, and then all would be equally brave" -Lt. Gen. Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson

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Location: Texas, United States

Rhode Islander by Birth, Texan by the grace of God.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

And So Began The 13 Days of Glory-REMEMBER THE ALAMO!

Send this to San Felipe by Expressnight & day
ToThe People of TexasandAll Americans


Commandancy of the Alamo--Bejar, Fby 24th 1836--
To the People of Texas & all Americans in the world--
Fellow citizens & compatriots--I am besieged, by a thousand or more of the Mexicans under Santa Anna--I have sustained a continual Bombardment & cannonade for 24 hours & havenot lost a man -- The enemy has demanded a surrender at discretion, otherwise, the garrison are to be put to the sword, if the fort is taken -- I have answered the demand with a cannonshot, & our flag still waves proudly from the walls -- I shall never surrender or retreat. Then, I call on you in the name of Liberty, of patriotism & everything dear to the American character, to come to our aid, with all dispatch -- The enemy is receiving reinforcements daily & will no doubt increase to three or four thousand in four or five days. If this call is neglected, I am determined to sustain myself as long as possible & die like a soldier who never forgets what is due to his own honor & that of his country --

Victory or Death
William Barret Travis
Lt. Col. comdt

P.S. The Lord is on our side --When the enemy appeared in sight we had not three bushels of corn --We have since found in desertedhouses 80 or 90 bushels & got intothe walls 20 or 30 head of Beeves -- Travis

Saturday, February 19, 2005

60th Anniversary

Today is the 60th Anniversary of the Battle of Iwo Jima.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Today in Civil War History

1864 Sherman enters Meridian, Mississippi

Union General William T. Sherman enters Meridian, Mississippi, during a winter campaign that served as a precursor to Sherman's "March to the Sea." This often-overlooked campaign was the first attempt by the Union at total warfare, a strike aimed not just at military objectives but also at the will of the southern people.
Sherman launched the campaign from Vicksburg, Mississippi, with the goal of destroying the rail center at Meridian and clearing central Mississippi of Confederate resistance. Sherman believed this would free additional Federal troops that he hoped to use on his planned campaign against Atlanta, Georgia, in the following months.
Sherman led 25,000 troops east from Vicksburg and ordered another 7,000 under General William Sooy Smith to march southeast from Memphis, Tennessee. They planned to meet at Meridian in eastern Mississippi. The Confederates had few troops with which to stop Sherman. General Leonidas Polk had less than 10,000 men to defend the state. Polk retreated from the capital at Jackson as Sherman approached, and some scattered cavalry units could not impede the Yankees' progress. Polk tried to block the roads to Meridian so the Confederates could move as many supplies as possible from the city's warehouses, but Sherman pushed into the city on February 14 in the middle of a torrential rain.
After capturing Meridian, Sherman began to destroy the railroad and storage facilities while he waited for the arrival of Smith. Sherman later wrote: "For five days, 10,000 men worked hard and with a will in that work of destruction...Meridian, with its depots, storehouses, arsenals, hospitals, offices, hotels, and cantonments no longer exists." Sherman waited until February 20 for Smith to arrive, but Smith never reached Meridian. On February 21, Confederate troops under General Nathan Bedford Forrest waylaid Smith at West Point, Mississippi, and dealt the Federals a resounding defeat. Smith returned to Memphis, and Sherman turned back towards Vicksburg.
Ultimately, Sherman failed to clear Mississippi of Rebels, and the Confederates repaired the rail lines within a month. Sherman did learn how to live off the land, however, and took notes on how to strike a blow against the civilian population of the South. He used that knowledge with devastating results in Georgia later that year.