Friday, May 7, 2010

Two Union Veterans at Fort Fisher-- Part 4

Back on April 24th and 26th, I started this rather lengthy account taken from the January 2009 Oregon Magazine "Storming the Ramparts" by Randy Fletcher. I especially liked it because it detailed the lives of two men who grew up in different sections of the country, had widely different military careers, both were at one battle, probably within several hundred yards of each other, and whose lives took different paths after that, but who came to spend their last years in the same state and town.

We left the story with Roswell Lamson having breakfast with Samuel Preston and Admiral Porter in board the USS Malvern after the experiment blowing up the USS Louisiana.

The explosion didn't work and General Benjamin Butler landed his troops, but withdrew saying the fortifications were too strong. This drew the ire of General Grant who removed Butler from command and replaced him with General Alfred Terry.

Terry's plan of attack on Fort Fisher was to land at the same spot, have the USCT hold off Hoke's troops north of the fort, have an amphibious assault by US Naval and Marine forces along the seafront and Army attack the land front.

Across the front of the fort, a nine-foot high palisade fence had been constructed for more protection. It had been a focus of the bombardment, but a lot of it still remained, especially the part closest to the river where the soldiers intended to attack. It would be necessary for someone to go forward and breech it.

Dirty Work, Bit Somebody's Got to Do It. --Old B-Runner

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