Battle of Fort Blakely

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Battle of Fort Blakely

April 2-9, 1865

Fort Blakely  

Other Names: None

Location: Baldwin County

Campaign: Mobile Campaign (1865)

Date(s): April 2-9, 1865

Principal Commanders: Maj. Gen. E.R.S. Canby [US]; Brig. Gen. St. John R. Liddell [CS]

Forces Engaged: XIII and XVI Corps [US]; Fort Blakely Garrison [CS]

Estimated Casualties: Total 4,475. April 9 only 3,529 (US 629; CS 2,900)

General Edward Canby Canby commanded the Union forces assigned to conduct the campaign against Mobile, Alabama in the spring of 1865. This culminated in the Battle of Fort Blakely, which led to the fall of Mobile on April 12, 1865. Canby accepted the surrender of the Confederate forces under General Richard Taylor in Citronelle, on May 4, 1865, and those under General Edmund Kirby Smith west of the Mississippi River on May 26, 1865.

Description: E.R.S. Canby’s forces, the XVI and XIII corps, moved along the eastern shore of Mobile Bay, forcing the Confederates back into their defenses. Union forces then concentrated on Spanish Fort and Fort Blakely. By April 1, Union forces had enveloped Spanish Fort, thereby releasing more troops to focus on Fort Blakely. Brig. Gen. St. John R. Liddell, with about 4,000 men, held out against the much larger Union force until Spanish Fort fell on April 8, allowing Canby to concentrate 16,000 men for the attack on April 9. Sheer numbers breached the Confederate earthworks compelling the Confederates to capitulate. The siege and capture of Fort Blakely was basically the last combined-force battle of the war. African-American forces played a major role in the successful Union assault.

St. John Richardson Liddell Liddell was assigned to overall command of the infantry at Mobile, Alabama until to its surrender in 1865. During the last campaign, Liddell and Union Maj. Gen. E.R.S. Canby engaged in the Battle of Fort Blakely, one of the last engagements of the war, where he was captured. Canby would later prove influential in Liddell’s life by securing amnesty for him from the Federal Government.

Result(s): Union victory (Fort Blakely surrendered.)

CWSAC Reference #: AL006

Preservation Priority: III.1 (Class A)

Additional Resources:

The Twenty-First Missouri Volunteer Infantry Burial and Death Information


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