Civil War in Alabama
Alabama soldiers fought in hundreds of battles; the state’s losses at Gettysburg were 1,750 dead plus even more captured or wounded; the famed “Alabama Brigade” took 781 casualties. Governor Lewis E. Parsons in July 1861 made a preliminary estimate of losses. Nearly all the white men served, some 122,000 he said, of whom 35,000 died in the war and another 30,000 were seriously disabled. The next year Governor Robert M. Patton estimated that 20,000 veterans had returned home permanently disabled, and there were 20,000 widows and 60,000 orphans. With cotton prices low, the value of farms shrank, from $176 million in 1860 to only $64 million in 1870. The livestock supply shrank too, as the number of horses fell from 127,000 to 80,000, and mules 111,000 to 76.000. The overall population remained the same—the growth that might have been expected neutralized by death and emigration.
Civil War Sites in Alabama
- Battle of Athens
- Battle of Day’s Gap
- Battle of Decatur
- Battle of Fort Blakely
- Battle of Mobile Bay
- Battle of Newton
- Battle of Ebenezer Church
- Battle of Selma
- Battle of Munford
- Battle of Sulphur Creek Trestle
- Battle of Spanish Fort
|Battle of Athens |
On the morning of January 26, 1864, at around 4:00 a.m., 600 Confederate cavalrymen attacked Athens, which was being held by a Union force of only 100. Even though the Union defenders had no fortifications and were outnumbered six to one, they were able to repulse the Confederate attack and force them into a retreat after a two-hour battle.
|Battle of Day's Gap |
The Battle of Day's Gap, fought on April 30, 1863, was the first in a series of American Civil War skirmishes in Cullman County, Alabama, that lasted until May 2, known as Streight's Raid. Commanding the Union forces was Col. Abel Streight; Brig. Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest led the Confederate forces.
|Battle of Decatur |
The Battle of Decatur was a demonstration conducted from October 26 to October 29, 1864, as part of the Franklin-Nashville Campaign of the American Civil War. Union forces of 3–5,000 men under Brig. Gen. Robert S. Granger prevented the 39,000 men of the Confederate Army of Tennessee under Gen. John B. Hood from crossing the Tennessee River at Decatur, Alabama.
Decatur, AL, United States
|Battle of Fort Blakely |
April 2-9, 1865
Spanish Fort, AL, United States
Bridgeport is a city in Jackson County, Alabama with a population of 2,728.
Because of its location on both a rail line and the Tennessee River, Bridgeport was a strategic site during the American Civil War. The rail bridge at Bridgeport was among those targeted by the East Tennessee bridge-burning conspiracy in November 1861. Bridgeport was the site of a major skirmish on April 29 and August 26, 1862, and numerous other small actions took place in the area. In the latter part of the war, Bridgeport was the site of a major shipyard building gunboats and transports for the Union Army. The USS Chattanooga was built here and became a vital part of the famous "Cracker Line," which broke the Confederate's siege of Chattanooga in November 1863.(See the official records) Bridgeport was incorporated as a city in 1891.
Wikipedia contributors, "Bridgeport, Alabama," Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Bridgeport,_Alabama&oldid=639515464 (accessed December 25, 2014).
|Crooked Creek Battleground |
Crooked Creek Battleground (Day's Gap at Sand Mountain) April 30, 1863
(Hog Mountain April 30, Bluntsville May 1, Black Creek May 2, Blount's Plantation May 2)
Cullman County Alabama
Confederate Gen. Nathan Bedford Forrest and Union Col. Abel Streight fought for several hours on April 30, 1863 at Crossing of Crooked Creek & Hog Mountain.
Forces Engaged: Men from 51st Indiana Infantry, 73rd Indiana Infantry, 3rd Ohio Infantry, 80th Illinois Infantry, and 1st Middle Tennessee Cavalry [US]; three regiments [CS]
Estimated Casualties: 88 total (US 23; CS 65)
|Fort Harker |
Fort Harker, located near Stevenson, Alabama, was a military fortification built by the Union Army during the American Civil War, constructed in the summer of 1862.
Union General William Rosecrans established his headquarters at Fort Harker in July, 1863.
The design of the fort is typical of many built during the American Civil War. The fort was constructed as a square earthen redoubt, 45 meters (148 feet) on a side. The walls were constructed of rammed earth 4.3 meters (14 feet) high, surrounded by a 2.5 meters (8.2 feet) deep dry moat. The fort was armed with seven barbettes for heavy cannon, and a bomb-proof powder magazine. Access to the fort was by draw bridge across the moat. An eight-sided wooden blockhouse was situated at the center of the redoubt.
The fort would be abandoned after the war and fall into disrepair. After restoration, the site became a city park in 1985.
|Gravelly Springs |
March 22, 1865
Union Brig. Gen. James H. Wilson crosses the rain-swollen Tennessee River at Gravelly Springs in Lauderdale County, Alabama.
Maj. Gen. James Harrison Wilson, U.S. Army, assembled the largest cavalry force ever massed in the western hemisphere. Five divisions totaling 22,000 camped from Gravelly Springs westward to Waterloo, Alabama.
Wilson made headquarters a mile east of the springs at Wildwood plantation. After intensive training Wilson's Cavalry crossed the rain-swollen Tennessee River to invade South Alabama and Georgia.
Wilson split his men into three divisions that were to proceed in three separate columns in order to mask his intentions and confuse Confederate Lt. General Nathan Bedford Forrest and conceal the intended target, Selma Alabama.
|The Rape of Athens |
On May 2, 1862, Athens was seized by Union forces under the command of Colonel John Basil Turchin.
Business were hit first, and anything of value that could be carried away were looted and anything that could not be was simply destroyed. After rampaging through stores the soldiers plundered private homes. A slave girl was raped. The soldiers also attempted to rape a servant girl.
The violent behavior of the soldiers caused a pregnant woman to suffer a miscarriage and die. The townpeople estimated the damage to be fifty-five thousand dollars. The resulting pillage and plunder came to be known as the Rape of Athens.
The Rape of Athens Alabama