Today we traveled 300 miles from Red Bay, Alabama to Vicksburg, Mississippi. We checked into the
Ameristar RV Park. The lady that checked us in was quick to say there was a 10% discount noted on my stay, and then gave us two coupons for a free breakfast in the morning at the casino across the street. Can't beat a deal like that. Then, we noticed that there was a $5.00 senior lunch at Diamond Jack's, which is just down the road. Wow, this day is getting better.
It was off to Diamond Jacks. After lunch we stopped atop the hillside and grabbed a couple of shots of
The Mighty Mississippi River. We then headed out to spend a little time in the past at...
site of the Battle over Vicksburg.
So, come along with us and we will revisit a Civil War battle that cost us the lives of 20,o00 soldiers. And, friends...those were all American lives!
Now, in the year of 1862, it was determined that the states of Texas, Arkansas, and most of Louisiana needed to be isolated. This was a region that the South highly depended on for their supplies. In order to isolate these states...the Mississippi waterway would have to be cut off and the federal government needed that control. But, in order for them to have that control, Vicksburg and Port Hudson posed to be the major obstacles. Vicksburg being the stronger and more important.
sit high on a bluff that overlooked
a bend in the river, it was protected by artillery batteries all along the riverfront.
In October of 1862,
Major General Ulysses S. Grant, was ordered to clear the Mississippi River of all Confederate resistance. However,
Gen. John C. Pemberton with roughly 50,00 widely scattered Confederate troops, was expected to keep the river open.
Pemberton was able to hold off Grant in several attempts, but on May 16, at Champion Hill, Grant defeated Pemberton in the largest bloodiest action of the campaign.
The battle and progression by the Union Army continued and finally on July 3, 1863, just 46 days after the campaign for Vicksburg started, Pemberton surrendered Vicksburg to Grant.
Port Hudson surrendered just five days later.
It was said by Abraham Lincoln that "Vicksburg was the key" and believed that "the war would never be brought to an end until that key was in their pocket".
And, the rest is history...but today as we drove through this National Battleground, we saw
battle lines that had been drawn and held or defeated and redrawn. We saw
trenches that were dug, and we were reminded of the
many lives that were lost in those 46 days. And, to be further reminded...
There are many, many
statue through out the 11 mile drive around the park.
But, most of all we were reminded today of a war that took place on American soil and how it changed and shaped our United States.
And, as far as the Mighty Mississippi River...it changed it's course in 1876 and moved away from the city, but today it still continues to shape the history Vicksburg!