Thursday, November 11, 2010

Veterans Day

On this particular day we remember those who fought and died for our freedom.  Those who in the revolutionary war fought against the British army and won our freedom.  Those who have fought over seas to fight for our freedom and security. 

Remember all those who had the guts to go fight and die for freedom.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

This day in Providential History, October 16th

In 1781 - George Washington takes Yorktown, from British forces.
In 1793 - Marie Anoinette is guillotined at the pinnacle of the French Revolution.
In 1813 - The Sixth Coalition attacks Napoleon at Lepzig.
In 1859 - John Brown leads a raid on Harper's Ferry, Virginia.
In 1923 - Walt Disney is founded by Walt Disney and his brother, Roy Disney.
In 1939 - WWII: First air attacks on Britian by the German Luftwaffe.
In 1940 - The Warsaw Ghetto is established.
In 1962 - The Cuban Missile Crisis begins.
In 2006 - A 6.7 Earthquake causes massive damage's to property.

To see the complete list of events, births, and deaths Click Here

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Part 11 - Chancellorsville

The Battle of Chancellorsville, fought from April 30 to May 6, 1863 was a major battle that also kept turning the ride to the Union favor.  The battle is called 'Lee's Perfect Battle' because of his risky but successful division of his army in the presence of a much larger enemy force. Lee's audacity and Hooker's timid performance in combat combined to result in a significant Union defeat. The Confederate victory was tempered by the mortal wounding of Stonewall Jackson.
May 1st and 2nd
The Battle of Chancellorsville began with the crossing of the Rappahannock river on April 27, 1863 by the Federal Army of the Potomac under Gen. Joseph Hooker.  The army then crossed the Rapidan River and concentrated their forces near Chancellorsville on April 30th and May 1st.
By May 1, Hooker had approximately 70,000 men concentrated around Chancellorsville. From his Fredericksburg headquarters, Lee decided to violate one of the generally accepted 'Principle's of war' and divide his force in the face of a superior enemy, hoping that aggressive action would allow him to attack and defeat a portion of Hooker's army before it could be fully concentrated against him, it worked.  So Lee left behind a brigade and a division at Mayre's heights to contest any assault that came from Union General Sedgwick's corps.  Lee ordered Stonewall Jackson to march west and link up with Maj. Richard Anderson, assembling 40,000 men to confront Hooker at Chancellorsville.  Providentialy for the Confederates, heavy fog the Rappahannock masked some of these westward movements and Sedgwick chose to wait until he could determine the enemy's intentions.

At the same time General Jackson was marching west to join with Anderson on the morning of May 1, Hooker ordered an advance to the east to strike Anderson, pushing his men out of the impenetrable thickets that characterized the area.  Hooker did this because in the wilderness his advantage of Artillery would be minimized. Despite being in a potentially favorable situation, Hooker halted his brief offensive. His actions may have demonstrated his lack of confidence in handling the complex actions of such a large organization for the first time (he had been an effective and aggressive division and corps commander in previous battles), but he had also decided before beginning the campaign that he would fight the battle defensively, forcing Lee, with his small army, to attack Hooker's larger one.  Lee then prepared for the attack.
For Lee's attack to work, three things had to happen. First, Jackson had to make a 12-mile (19 km) march via roundabout roads to reach the Union right, and he had to do it undetected. Second, Lee had to hope that Hooker stayed tamely on the defensive. Third, Early would have to keep Sedgwick bottled up in Fredericksburg. And when Jackson launched his attack, he had to hope that the Union forces were unprepared.
May 3rd
All of these conditions were met.  The Confederates smashed the Federals.  However, on May 3rd after heavy fighting the Union troops retreated out of Chancellorsville.  Still, Lee could not declare victory, nor was Hooker conceding defeat. During the height of the fighting at Chancellorsville on May 3, he called on Sedgwick to break through and attack Lee's rear. Again that general delayed until it was too late. That afternoon, he finally did attack Early's position (after Early at one point abandoned it himself because of a misinterpreted order from Lee), and broke through. But he did it too late in the day to help Hooker. In fact, a single Alabama brigade slowed the already sluggish advance. 
May 4th
On the evening of May 3 and all day May 4, Hooker remained in his defenses while Lee and Early battled Sedgwick. After breaking Early's defenses on May 3rd, Sedgwick foolishly neglected to secure Fredericksburg. Early simply marched back and reoccupied the heights west of the city, cutting Sedgwick off.
Sedgwick, as it turned out, was as strong on the defensive as he was weak on the attack, and he stood his ground that day before withdrawing back across the Rappahannock at Banks's Ford during the pre-dawn hours of May 5. This was another miscommunication between him and Hooker; the commanding general had wanted Sedgwick to hold Banks's Ford, so that Hooker could withdraw from the Chancellorsville area and re-cross the river at Banks's to fight again. When he learned that Sedgwick had retreated back over the river, Hooker felt he was out of options to save the campaign, and on the night of May 5–6, he also withdrew back across the river.
In the end Jackson was dead after taking friendly fire then being dropped on a root which punctured his lung.  Jackson then contracted Pneumonia.  13,000 casualties for the Confederates and 17,000 for the Federals.

Monday, October 11, 2010

October 11th This Day in Provedential History

In 1138 - A massive earthquake strikes Aleppo Syria.
In 1531 - Huldrych Zwingli is killed in battle by the Roman Catholic cantons of Switzerland.
In 1809 - Meriwether Lewis dies under mysterious circumstances at an inn called Grinder's Stand in Tennessee.
In 1958 - Pioneer 1 is launched, however it burns up and falls back to earth.

To see the complete list of events, births, and deaths Click Here

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Part 10 - Fredericksburg

Fredericksburg overview
Robert E. Lee
Ambrose Burnside
The Battle of Fredericksburg was fought December 11–15, 1862, in and around Fredericksburg, Virginia.  It was one of the most bloody battle's of the war.  Ambrose Burnside planned to take the Army of the Potomac and race to Richmond before Lee could stop him.  However bureaucratic delays slowed Burnside down because he could not obtain the necessary pontoon bridges.  Lee caught up to Burnside and blocked his way at Fredericksburg.  When Burnside finally got the bridges the army crossed under fire and from December 11th to the 12th urban fighting ensued.  After driving the confederates out they prepared to assault the strongly fortified Confederate positions south of the city at Marye's Heights.  On the 13th  Gen. William Franklin pierced Stonewall Jackson's line but was finally repulsed.  Burnside launched many head on assaults that did nothing but add to their casualties.
On December 15th Burnside finally retreated having lost 12,653 men.  The Confederates only lost 5,377 men.

Thus ended Burnside's campaign in the Eastern Theatre.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

October 9th, This Day in Provedential History

In 1047- Pope Clement II dies
In 1760 - The Seven Years War, Russian forces capture Berlin.
In 1824 - Slavery is abolished in Costa Rica.
In 1854 - The Crimean War The Siege of Sebastopol begins.
In 1914 - WWI Antwerp falls to German troops.

To see the complete list of events, births, and deaths Click Here

Friday, October 1, 2010

Part 9 - The Maryland Campaign

McClellan - Lee
The Maryland Campaign, or the Antietam Campaign (September 4–20, 1862) is widely considered one of the major turning points of the American Civil War.
Following up his victory in the Northern Virginia Campaign on September 4, 1862 Lee moved north with his 55,000 man Army of Northren Virginia.  Lee moved north through the Shennandoah Valley.  His objective was to resupply his army outside of the war-torn Virginia theater and to damage Northern morale in anticipation of the November elections. He undertook the risky maneuver of splitting his army so that he could continue north into Maryland while simultaneously capturing the Federal arsenal at Harper's Ferry.  McClellan accidentally found a copy of Lee's orders, wrapped in three cigars, to his subordinate commanders and planned to isolate and defeat the separated portions of Lee's army.
Battle of Antietam
While 'Stonewall' Jackson captured Harper's Ferry, McClellan moved quickly through the South Mountain.  However Lee found out and though being out numbered heavily, delayed McClellan for more than a day before withdrawing.  This delay allowed Lee enough time to concentrate his forces at Sharpsburg, Maryland(Antietam).  The next day, September 17 was the bloodiest one-day battle in U.S. history.  There were over 22,000 casualties.  Lee, outnumbered two to one, moved his defensive forces to parry each offensive blow, McClellan never deployed all of the reserves of his army to capitalize on localized successes and destroy the Confederates. On September 18, Lee ordered a withdrawal across the Potomac and on September 19 and September 20, fights with Lee's rear guard at Shepherdstown finally ended the long bloody campaign.

Although Antietam was a tactical draw, Lee's Maryland Campaign failed to achieve its objectives.  President Lincoln used this to announce the Emancipation Proclamation which effectively ended any foreign alliance with the Confederates.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Part 8 - The Cruise of the CSS Alabama

CSS Alabama
The CSS Alabama is one of the most famous ships in history.  It was built in 1862 by the Confederate Navy to try and break the blockade.  The CSS Alabama is a screw sloop of war.  The ship, however was not built in America, but at Birckenhead, England.  The ships main purpose was to raid commerce so that federal ships would have to come off of the blockade therefore making it easier to slip through.  She never even docked at any Confederate port but sailed around the world and wreaked havoc with Federal shipping.  The captain of the ship was 52 year old Ralph Semmes, a Mexican War veteran.  He sailed all seven seas and tore into Federal shipping wherever he could find them.  The Union navy sent several warships after the Alabama.
One of those ships, the USS Hatteras, the CSS Alabama met and left a flaming wreckage.  He sank 10 ships off the Azores coast.  Captured 11 ships off the Canadian coast.  
Finally in 1864 the Union ship USS Kearsarge cornered the Alabama in the port of Cherbourg, France.  The Alabama sailed out, it was needing major repairs and its ammunition was defective.  The Kearsarge, had been newly outfitted with 11 pound Dahlgrens.  And not even known to Semmes it had been outfitted with sheet chain and was in fact an ironclad.  At first the battle swayed in the Alabama's favor.  One of the shells from the Alabama stuck in a vital position.  However the shell was a dud and the battle swayed now toward the Kearsarge.  The Kearsarge's shells wrecked havoc on the Alabama while most of the shots from the CSS Alabama just bounced off.
Ralph Semmes

Even though the Alabama sunk the Union ship could still not catch Semmes, he escaped on a English Yacht.  In the end the CSS Alabama cost the U.S. Government nearly 7 million dollars, and 66 ships.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Part 7 - Shiloh

Albert Sydney Johnston
Carlos Beull
The Battle of Shiloh, also known as the Battle of Pittsburg Landing, was a major battle in the western theater. 
It was also a turning point.  Union General Ulysses S. Grant led his army of Tennessee (48,894 strong) after his victories at Fort Henry and Fort Donelson and his drive through Tennessee.  As Grants army was encamped at Pittsburg Landing.  The Confederates under General Albert Sydney Johnston and P. G. T. Beauregard launched a massive ambush of Grants troops as they marched from Pittsburg Landing.  On the first day of the battle, the Confederates struck with the intention of driving the Union defenders away from the river and into the swamps of Owl Creek to the west, hoping to defeat Grant's Army of Tennessee, before the anticipated arrival of Maj. Gen. Don Carlos Beull's Army of the Ohio. (17,918 strong)The Confederate battle lines became confused during the fierce fighting, and Grant's men instead fell back to the northeast, in the direction of Pittsburg Landing. A position on a slightly sunken road, nicknamed the "Hornet's Nest", defended tenaciously by the Federal forces.
This provided critical time for the rest of the Union line to stabilize under the protection of numerous artillery batteries. Gen. Johnston was killed during the first day of fighting, and Beauregard, his second in command, decided against assaulting the final Union position that night.  Jefferson Davis, President of CSA said when he heard the news of Johnston's death "I realized that our strongest pillar had been broken."

 Reinforcements from Gen. Buell and from Grant's own army arrived in the evening and turned the tide the next morning, when the Union commanders launched a counterattack along the entire line. The Confederates were forced to retreat from the bloodiest battle in United states history up to that time.  The battle itself was a draw, but a tactical victory for the Federals.  It cost the CSA 10,699 men in casualties, their best western theater General, locked the Confederates out of west Tennessee for good, and shook the armies confidence.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

September 28th This Day in Providential History

In 1066 - William the Conqueror invades England and the Norman Conquest begins.
In 1781 - American forces, backed by the French Fleet begin the siege of Yorktown.
In 1787- The American Constitution is voted on by the U.S. Congress to be sent to the State Legislator.
In 1791 - France becomes the first European nation to emancipate the Jews.
In 1939 - Nazi Germany and Russia agree to divide Poland after their invasion.
In 1939 - Warsaw surrenders to Germany.
In 1944 - Soviet troops liberate the Klooga Concentration Camp in Klooga, Estonia.

To see the complete list of events, births, and deaths Click Here

Monday, September 27, 2010

The Civil War Part 6 - The Northren Virginia Campaign

Pope and Lee
The Northern Virginia Campaign, also known as the Second Bull Run Campaign or Second Manassas Campaign, was a series of battles fought in Northern Virginia  these battles lasted during August and September 1862.  Confederate General Robert E. Lee, following up his successes at the Seven day's campaign moved the Army of Northern Virginia (48,500 strong), north to confront General John Pope's Army of Virginia (75,000 strong).   Lee did this because of his concern that Pope's and McClellan's still large army would combine and overwhelm him. 
So Lee sent Gen. Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson north to intercept Pope at Gordonsville the forces though clashed at Cedar Mountain which was a confederate victory.  So Lee followed Jackson with most of his army.  Jackson then conducted a wide-ranging move around Pope's right flank, seizing the large supply depot in Pope's rear, at Manassas Junction.  Placing his men between Pope and Washington D.C. Jackson put his men in a well defended area near the battle of the First Manassas.  Jackson successfully repulsed Union attacks on August 29 as Lee and Longstreet's command arrived on the battlefield. On August 30, Pope attacked again, but was surprised to be caught between attacks by Longstreet and Jackson, and was forced to withdraw with heavy losses. The campaign concluded with another flanking maneuver by Jackson.  Jackson hoped to cut off the Union retreat from Bull Run. On September 1, beyond Chantilly Plantation on the Little River turnpike, near Ox Hill.  Jackson sent his divisions against two Union divisions, fierce fighting broke out.  The confederate attacks were stopped by fierce fighting during a severe thunderstorm. Union generals Stevens and Kearny were both killed. Recognizing that his army was still in danger at Fairfax Courthouse, Pope ordered the retreat to continue to Washington.
Lee's maneuvering against Pope is considered a great military masterpiece. Historian John J. Hennessy wrote that "Lee may have fought cleverer battles, but this was his greatest campaign."

In the end the Army of Northern Virginia lost 9,197, while the Union forces lost 16,054.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Part - 5 The Seven Days Battle's Continued

McClellan and Lee
   The next days were a series of small battles such as Battle of Garnett's & Golding's Farm on June 28th, and Savage Station on the 29th.  On June 30th Lee tried to intercept the retreating Army of the Potomac at the battle of  Battle of Glendale, also known as the Battle of Frayser's Farm, Frazier's Farm, Nelson's Farm, Charles City Crossroads, New Market Road, or Riddell's Shop.  Though the casualties were about equal (3,797 297 killed, 1,696 wounded, and 1,804 missing or captured by the Union Forces, and 3,673 638 killed, 2,814 wounded, and 221 missing by the Confederate Forces) this battle was lost because of poorly executed orders by the Confederates Forces, the loss also gave the Union troops time to dig in at Malvern Hill.
Malvern Hill
   The final battle of the Seven Days Battle's was the the Battle of Malvern Hill, also known as the Battle of Poindexter's Farm, which took place on July 1, 1862. Gen. Robert E. Lee launched a series of disjointed assaults on the nearly impregnable Union forces at Malvern Hill.  Lee's forces took more than 5,300 casualties without gaining an inch of ground.  Despite his victory Gen. McClellan continued his retreat down the James river.  If McClellan had gone on the offensive the war may have been much shorter.
   The Seven Days ended with McClellan's army in relative safety at Harrison's Landing on the James River, having suffered almost 16,000 casualties during the retreat. Lee's army, which had been on the offensive during the Seven Days, lost over 20,000.  As Lee became convinced that McClellan would not resume his threat against Richmond, he moved north for the Northern Virginia Campaign and the Maryland Campaign.