Friday, February 24, 2012

Fall of Nashville 150 Years Ago-- Part 1

From the Feb, 23rd Nashville (Tn) Public Radio "Civil War Sesquicentennial: Nashville Occupation."

Means something to me because my brother lived there many years and my nephew and family still live near there. Plus, huge country fan.

It was 150 years ago yesterday, Feb. 23, 1862, that the city of Nashville was handed over to Union forces without a fight from the Confederates. This a direct result of the capture of Fort Donelson earlier in the week. Union Naval and Army forces pushed their way up the Cumberland River. You'd have to wonder why Confederate forces gave up the city without a fight, just from its railroad connections.

Union troops arrived in what today is East Nashville and rumors abounded of the impending total destruction of the city.

Tennessee native Andrew Johnson was put in charge of the city. It was hoped he would keep fears in check since he had been Tennessee governor earlier and had lived in Nashville.

The was not going to be an easy occupation because of Southern sentiment. Rachel Carter Craighead, a newly wed, kept a diary during the war and wrote that she was not happy that Union troops attended services at her church, and, even worse, a few died and it was "outrageous to fill up our cemetery with such trash."

Johnson ordered the arrests of three high-profile people: a man who helped negotiate Tennessee's entry into the Confederacy, an outspoken secessionist judge and the man who helped arm Tennessee troops. They were sent 800 miles away to a fort in Northern Michigan.

And, Without a Fight? What Gives Here? --Old Secesh

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