Tuesday, April 30, 2019
From the April 7, 2019, Chicago Sun-Times by Rachel Hinton.
Two black groups want the monument removed because such black notables as Ida B. Wells, Jesse Owens and Chicago's first black mayor, Harold Washington are buried in the cemetery. About a dozen protested. They would like to have a monument to Ida B. Wells. (At one time there was a monument to this remarkable woman in the form of the Ida B. Wells Housing Project.)
The monument stands atop what is called the Confederate Mound at the cemetery and is the site of the graves of over 4,000 Confederate soldiers who died at Camp Douglas prison during the Civil War. It was a Union prison noted for its harsh conditions.
The cemetery is located at 1035 E. 67th Street in Chicago's Greater Grand Crossing neighborhood.
The Confederate Mound monument is administered by the Federal Veterans Administration and overseen by the Abraham Lincoln National cemetery in Elwood, Illinois (near Joliet).
Matthew Evans, the camp commander of the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) Camp Douglas Camp #516, says there is little they can do because the site is owned by the Veterans Administration.
Personally, I would like to have monuments to the three people mentioned in the first paragraph as long as they are privately funded. They were all remarkable people whose memories should never be forgotten.
Monday, April 29, 2019
I listed the headlines of just three days from the Google Alert for Confederate to show that these horrible attacks continue unabated. These are, as I said, headlines. Type in the headline to read search for the article.
From the April 26, 2019, Google Alerts for Confederate.
** Controversial 'Confederate Memorial Day' honors soldiers killed during Civil War.
** Arlington Co. (Va.) votes to remove Confederate president's name from highway.
** James Byrd's murder shows why Confederate holiday should end.
** Mississippi state flag, with Confederate emblem, at Georgetown's Howard Center draws criticism.
** 2 guilty for toppling North Carolina's campus's Confederate statue.
** County judge says deal struck to move Confederate statue from Pine Bluff courthouse.
** 'Confederate militia' boss who abused immigrants at gunpoint attacked in jail.
They Just Go On. --Old Secesh
Saturday, April 27, 2019
From April 25, 2019, Google Alerts for Confederate.
** Jefferson Co. judge plans to remove the Confederate statue from courthouse.
** Confederate monument on Tyler square vandalized. (I wish they'd quit calling these events vandalism, they are nothing short of Hate Crimes.)
** Confederate Memorial Day service held in Milton on Saturday.
** Un-Celebrating Confederate Heroes Day at the Lege.
** Ask the Question: Confederate fountain in Helena.
** Just because it says 'Tennessee' doesn't mean it's Confederate.
You Think It's Over? --Old Secesh
Friday, April 26, 2019
Many people may think all this anti-Confederate hatred has run its course, at least around here in northern Illinois, because you don't hear much about it. But, believe me, it is NOT over in the least.
I get a Google Alert for the word Confederate every day. I usually don't read it though because I get too angry. But once a month now I will give just the headlines from those alerts. I'll do it for today and the two days before it.
APRIL 24, 2019
** Mississippi, the only state with a Confederate symbol in its flag, is offering a new flag design on it.
** 2 men arrested for putting KKK hoods on Confederate statues.
** School marks Confederate Memorial Day with lynching teach-in.
** Laramie County School District banning Confederate flags, allowing rainbow flags. This is a poll and you can vote on what you think.
** Confederate commander's distant relative opens eyes with new book. (Robert E. Lee)
** Statues of Johnny cash and Daisy Bates will replace Confederate statues in U.S. Capitol.
The Strange Tale of Col. Dahlgren's Prostheic Leg-- Part 2: The Leg That Served Both North and South
Union Colonel Ulric Dahlgren lost a leg in battle and acquired a new one . After he was killed in his famous raid on Richmond, his leg was taken and displayed in a Richmond department store. Soon thereafter, Confederate Lieutenant James Pollard, who had led the unit that killed Dahlgren, lost a leg.
He claimed Dahlgren's leg as a war prize. When it didn't fit him, he gave it to Confederate Captain John N. Ballard of Mosby's Rangers.
So, the leg served both North and South.
Captain Ballard had lost his leg in a skirmish with a small party of Union cavalry at Ewell's Chapel, east of Bull Run Mountains. After the war, he married Miss Thrift, and the Thrift Farm on the site of the Battle of Chantilly became known as the Ballard Farm.
Thursday, April 25, 2019
The McHenry County (Illinois) Civil War Round Table meets Saturday, April 27, at Panera Bread in Crystal Lake to discuss the Battle of Shiloh, which took place in April 1862.
Panera Bread is located at 6000 Northwest Highway (US-14) near Main Street. We meet from 10 am to noon.
All are welcome so come on by.
Wednesday, April 24, 2019
From Civil War Talk.
We may not know for sure what happened to Col. Ulric Dahlgren's real leg, but more is known about his prosthetic one.
When Confederate Captain John Newton Ballard of Mosby's Raiders lost his leg in battle in 1863, he quickly acquired a second hand artificial leg and got back to action. However, at Halltown, Virginia, his horse collided with that of a Union cavalryman and his artificial leg was crushed. This probably made him the only Civil War soldier to lose the same leg twice.
However, he was about to have some luck In March 1864, Union Col. Ulric Dahlgren was killed near Richmond leading a cavalry raid. He too had lost a leg in action in 1863 (and we know about it being buried in the Washington Navy Yard).
Dahlgren's body was found by a 13-year-old Confederate, who took the wooden leg as a souvenir. This prosthetic eventually made its way to John Ballard, who wore it until the end of the war.
Tuesday, April 23, 2019
And, yet, the story of the luckless colonel's leg does not end here. There is yet the story of what happened to the artificial leg Ulric Dahlgren was wearing when he was killed. I have seen it referred to as a cork and now a wooden leg in different sources..
That wooden leg, apparently, was not returned with the colonel's body. It was later said that one of John Mosby's Rangers, himself missing a leg, took it and wore it for many years.
An article in the Bennington, Vermont, Evening Banner on September 18, 1922, said that Captain John Ballard "probably will carry it with him to his grave."
Keeping Up With Ulric's Legs. --Old Secesh
Monday, April 22, 2019
And, then there is the story of what happened to the colonel's leg. After it was cut off, the question became what to do with it. It was in an advanced state of decomposition and it was determined that sending it to Philadelphia to be buried in the family plot was not an option.
But, there was a closer option: the Washington Navy Yard. Ulric's father, John Dahlgren, was no longer in charge there, but the current commander took the leg. At the time, a new foundry was being to built at the yard to cast the elder Dahlgren's cannons and it was deemed appropriate that the leg should be buried in a wall of it. A plaque was affixed to it saying that this was where the leg was buried.
The foundry was demolished in 1915 and replaced with a metal fabrication shop though the leg was kept where it was. However, the new shop was torn down in 1942 and the leg wasn't there. The plaque, however, was attached to the new building erected on the site which in turn was replaced with a parking garage in 1998. That plaque and another one explaining the story are still at the new facility.
It is not known where the leg is.
Where Is the Leg? --Old Secesh
Sunday, April 21, 2019
From the December 12, 2016, The Hill is Home blog "Lost Capital Hill : Ulric Dahlgren's Leg."
After his wounding in Hagerstown, Md., on July 6, 1863, Ulric Dahlgren completed his patrol and, while reporting to his commanding officer, fainted from loss of blood. He was sent home to his father's house by train just south of Judiciary Square in Washington, D.C..
At first it seemed the wound was minor, but it became clear after awhile that it would have to be amputated. During his recovery, Ulric received a visit from Secretary of War Edwin Stanton who brought good wishes, but also a promotion to colonel.
Ulric Dahlgren rejoined the Army, now with a cork leg. He was sent on a raid of Richmond targeting Jefferson Davis. But Davis survived, Ulric did not. Papers on Dahlgren's body gave away the story of killing Davis. Whether those papers were authentic is not known. However, Southerners were irate and Ulric's body was mutilated.
Much later the body was turned over to Union authorities and taken to Philadelphia for burial in the family plot.
Saturday, April 20, 2019
Despite the amputation, Ulric Dahlgren later returned to action, promoted to the rank of colonel while convalescing, he left his sick bed to lead a daring but controversial and ill-fated 1864 attack on Richmond.
His stump had not yet hardened enough to attach a wooden leg, so Dahlgren rode with his right thigh lashed to the saddle and crutches attached to the side of his horse..
He was killed when Confederate troops ambushed his detachment.
And, what about his leg?
The foundry was torn down after World War II, but the leg was not found. The plaque was moved to another building.
So, Leg, Leg, Who's Got the Leg. --Old Secesh
Friday, April 19, 2019
At the time of his wounding, Ulric Dahlhren was a 20-year-old cavalry officer leading a charge through the streets of Hagerstown, Maryland, when a Confederate shot struck his right ankle and passed through his foot. Three days later, he got home to Washington, but a fever set in and surgeons had to amputate his leg just below the knee.
His father was John Dahlgren, who had recently been commandant of the Washington Navy Yard (but now commanded the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron trying to take Charleston, S.C.) A new gun foundry was being built at the Yard. The day after the amputation, an ambulance took the leg to the yard, and a Marine honor guard escorted it to the foundry where the building's cornerstone was about to be laid.
The leg was placed in a box, draped with an American flag and sealed inside the cornerstone.
So, Now We Know Where the Leg Is, Or Do We? --Old SeceshWhere
I recently mentioned an article in the January 27, 1991, Washington (D.C.) Post "Sacrificial Limb" by Dwight Sullivan.
This one gave more details on the colonel's leg. I will write about it now as I am about out of my limited number of free articles to this newspaper. Plus, I had never heard of this story, other than Ulric Dahlgren's raid on Richmond.
"The macabre Civil War relic is just off M Street SE, mounted on the Washington Navy Yard's Building 28. It's a black metal plate bearing this inscription: "Within this wall is the leg of Col. Ulric Dahlgren U.S.V. wounded July 6th 1863 while skirmishing in the streets of Hagerstown with the rebels after the Battle of Gettysburgh."
Then, the story gets stranger.
Thursday, April 18, 2019
Sadly, I mentioned to a millennial friend last week about the death of Richard Cole. Now, I didn't expect her to know Richard Cole, so I added that he was a member of Doolittle's Raiders in World War II. Well, at least she knew about World War II, but had never heard of the Doolittle Raid.
I tell you, our education system with its current intense effort on math and science and overlooking history and geography is a big part of the blame for this. Anyway, I did a quick review of just how important of an event was on American morale in those first months of our involvement in the war.
At least she knows a little bit about it now.
But today, in honor of Richard Cole, the last of Doolittle's Raiders to die on April 9, I am going to write about the Raid and Mr. Cole in all seven of my blogs.
Job Well Done Mr. Cole and the Rest of Your Raiders. Like I Say, the Greatest Generation (GreGen). --GreGen
Wednesday, April 17, 2019
I have been writing about Ulric Dahlgran's leg in this blog.
His father, John Dahlgren, has an article in the April 2019 Naval History Magazine about his work on amphibious operations during the Civil War. John Dahlgren had been commander of the Washington Navy Yard before and during the first part of the war and had met with President Lincoln many times.
He was also responsible for the Dahlgren guns and other items for the Navy.
At the time of Ulric losing his leg, his father was commander of the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron.
Monday, April 15, 2019
Well, maybe we don't know for sure where Col. Dahlgren's real leg is, but his prosthetic one also has an interesting story.
From the May 7, 2014, Civil War Talk "This prosthetic leg served in both the Confederate and Union armies."
When Confederate Captain John Newton Ballard of Mosby's Rangers lost a leg in battle in 1863 he acquired a second-hand artificial one and got back into the war. Unfortunately for him, this one was crushed when his horse collided with a Union cavalry man's steed and his prosthetic was crushed, making him probably the only Civil War soldier to lose the same leg twice.
However, he was about to have a stroke of luck. In March 1864, Union Colonel Ulric Dahlgren was killed near Richmond, Virginia, during a cavalry raid. He too has lost a leg and was wearing an artificial limb.
Dahlgren's body was found by a 13-year-old Confederate who kept it as a souvenir. It eventually got to Ballard, who wore it until the end of the war.
The last several days I have been writing about Col. Ulric Dahlgren's amputated leg.
I have also been going back to my January 2014 posts in this blog to put in paragraphs. From around September 2013 to April 2014, I was unable to put paragraphs into any of my blogs, so I have been going back and doing so now that I can.
And, back then, I was writing about Jewett artificial limbs.
That is an interesting story as well and you might want to check it out. With all those amputations, some means had to be developed for the victims to get around.
You can click on the Jewett Artificial Limbs label to read about it.
Sunday, April 14, 2019
Shortly after the Battle of Gettysburg, he was in Hagerstown, Maryland, in July 1863 when his right foot and lower leg was hit by a bullet. It became necessary to amputate below the knee. He survived that, but a year later was killed during a Richmond Raid targeting Confederate President Jefferson Davis.
Now, back to that leg. Ulric Dahlgren's father was Rear Admiral John Dahlgren, who had developed an innovative smoothbore cannon and was admired by President Lincoln.
Leg burials weren't uncommon back in that era, at least among the well-connected. That summer, the heat in Washington, D.C. was sweltering and Ulric decided not to bury the leg at his home. So instead it ended up up in the cornerstone of a new foundry building being built. That building has since been torn down and is a building that serves as a parking lot.
However, there is a plaque at that structure, Building 28, that gives the story of Ulric's leg. However, a Washington Post story from 1991 reports that the leg may have been removed at some point so perhaps it is not there.
Where Is Ulric's Leg? --Old Secesh
Saturday, April 13, 2019
From the December 20, 2018, Greater Greater Washington, D.C.: "Breakfast Links: 10 interesting facts about Navy Yard you probably didn't know" by Leticia Johnson.
Even though the Washington Navy Yard probably should be in my Civil War Navy blog, since this story is primarily on a Union Army officer, I decided to put it here. I have been writing about the Washington Navy Yard in my Not So Forgotten: War of 1812 blog in regards to its destruction by the British and Americans during the attack on Washington, D.C., during that war.
I like to cross-over my blogs whenever I can.
Abraham Lincoln was a frequent visitor to this place during the war and John Wilkes Booth made his escape after the assassination over the Washington Navy Yard Bridge.
COLONEL ULRIC DAHLGREN'S LEG
Sounds like the makings of a good ghost story. The man's leg was buried at the Navy Yard.
10. There's a leg... buried in a parking garage... (that may or not still be there).
The severed appendage in question belongs to Ulric Dahlgren.
Want To Know More? --Old SecehLeg
Thursday, April 11, 2019
Siege of Port Hudson-- Part 3: Another Assault Repulsed and Confederate Surrender After Vicksburg Fell
Another attempt to take Port Hudson failed on June 13, when the Confederates inflicted 1,805 casualties on Union forces while losing fewer than 200. Those gad to be some strong earthwork defenses. The Confederates at Port Hudson held out until they learned of the surrender of Vicksburg.
Without its upriver (Mississippi River) position it lacked strategic significance and the garrison surrendered on July 9, 1963. This gave the Union control of the entire Mississippi River, though ships on the river came under Confederate attacks from time to time throughout the rest of the war.
Today the Port Hudson State Commemorative Area (Commemorative Area? Really?) has 889 acres on the northern portion of the battlefield, three observation towers, six miles of trails an a museum.
Four thousand Civil War veterans are buried at the Port Hudson National Cemetery which stands just outside the Confederate lines.
The first Union assault hit the Confederate left flank, guarding the northern approach to Port Hudson. Timely reinforcements from the Confederate center allowed them to repulse several Union attacks. The fighting here had ended before the next two Union divisions attacked the Confederate center.
Here, the Confederates easily handled the Union advance going across Slaughter's Field, killing around 2,000 Union troops. I imagine this is where Corporal Francis Warren received his wound and eventually received the Medal of Honor for his actions. I also wonder if the field was named that before the attack or after it.
Union casualties here included 600 Blacks of the First and Third Louisiana Native Guards who were led by Captain Andre Cailloux, a black officer.
Thus ended the first big attack on Fort Hudson. --Old Secesh
Wednesday, April 10, 2019
From the October 10, Chicago Tribune.
Richard Cole, 103, lived in Comfort, Texas, had been the last member of the famed group for several years and had stayed active even in recent years, attending air shows and participating in commemorative events including April 18, 2017, ceremonies for the Raid's 75th anniversary at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force near Dayton, Ohio.
Cole was mission commander Jimmy Doolittle's co-pilot in the attack which came less than five months after the disastrous December 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor by Japanese planes.
Tuesday, April 9, 2019
From National Park Service Explore the History and Culture of Southeastern Louisiana" Port Hudson.
Port Hudson was the site of the longest siege in American history, lasting 48 days. It pitted 7,500 Confederates against 40,000 Union troops. for almost two months in 1863.
In August 1862, the Confederates began constructing earthworks at Port Hudson to control the Mississippi River. In 1863, Union Major General Nathaniel P. Banks moved against them. Three Union divisions came down the Red River to attack Port Hudson from the north, while two more divisions advanced from Baton Rouge and New Orleans to strike from the east and south.
Francis Warren's 49th Massachusetts was among these Union forces.
By May 22, they had isolated 7,500 Confederates in their 4 1/2 miles of earthworks. Banks ordered an attack all along the Confederate lines on May 27, 1863.
From WyoHistory.org. "Francis E. Warren: A Massachusetts farm boy who changed Wyoming."
Son of a farmer born in Hinsdale, Massachusetts, June 22, 1844, but the farm began to falter and he had to drop out of school to help out. At age 15 he was working on a neighbor's dairy farm for $13 a month. He did manage to get back to school for a couple years.
When the Civil War broke out, he wanted to volunteer for the Union Army right away, but his father insisted he wait until his 18th birthday. He joined Company C of the 49th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry.
On May 27, 1863, during the Siege of Port Hudson, Louisiana, he volunteered to be part of the first attack group which was met by a tremendous Confederate fire with most of the men either wounded or killed. Francis Warren received a serious scalp wound and at first was thought to be dead.
An alert doctor saw that he was still alive and had him pulled from a trench or he might have been buried alive in a mass grave. He recovered fully from his wounds.
For his efforts on the battlefield that day, young Francis was cited for "bravery above and beyond the call of duty." Thirty years later, while serving in the U.S. Senate, he received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his courage.
Monday, April 8, 2019
The McHenry County Civil War Round Table (MCCWRT) will be meeting Tuesday, April 9, 2019 (Appomattox Day) at the Woodstock Public Library at 414 W. Judd Street in Woodstock, Illinois at 7 p.m..
This month's topic is Civil War Medicine with speaker Trevor Steinbach.
All are welcome, members and non-members. If you have an interest in history or the Civil war, where else would you want to be?
Between last month's presentation on Dr. Jonathan Letterman who did so much to organize the Army of the Potomac's hospitals and this one, we are sure becoming somewhat experts in this area.
See You There. --Old Secesh
Saturday, April 6, 2019
Still from Wikipedia.
** F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Cheyenne, Wyoming, is named after him.
** His daughter, Helen Frances Warren, married Army Captain John J. Pershing in 1905. he went on to achieve fame in World War I.
Several years later, President Theodore Roosevelt promoted him, with support from Francis Warren, from captain to brigadier general, despite many people in the Army having superiority over him. The marriage definitely helped.
Sadly, Helen and three daughters were killed in a fire at the Presidio in San Francisco.
** Warren was the first senator to hire a female staffer.
** He and his wife Clara Barron Morgan, bought the Nagle Warren Mansion in 1910 and it hosted many dignitaries including Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft.
Friday, April 5, 2019
Medal of Honor citation:
Rank and Organization: Corporal, Co. C, 49th Massachusetts Infantry
Place and Date: Port Hudson, Louisiana, 27 May 1863
Entered Service: Hinsdale, Massachusetts
Date of Issue: 30 September 1897
Thursday, April 4, 2019
Following the war, he engaged in farming and stock-raising in Massachusetts before moving to Wyoming, then part of the Dakota Territory. He settled in Cheyenne and engaged in mercantile, real estate and live stock and became quite wealthy.
He got involved in public ervice and served as a member of the Wyoming Territorial Senate, Cheyenne City Council, Wyoming treasurer and mayor of Cheyenne. In 1885, he was appointed Governor of Wyoming Territory and served from 1885 to 1890, when he was elected the first governor of the State of Wyoming.
Then he became a U.S. Senator and with a two year hiatus, served there until he died in 1929. At that time he was the longest-serving senator.
Francis married a woman from Massachusetts, but they spent all their married lives in Wyoming. They had two children, a boy and a girl. The girl's name was Helen Francis and she married General John J. Pershing of WW I fame.
Tuesday, April 2, 2019
Longstreet took a long time to prepare his attack and didn't step off until late afternoon. But, when he did attack, Ewell did not know as he could not hear any artillery or fighting. Longstreet was just narrowly beaten on July 2, 1863, and Ewell's lack of action might very well have contributed to it.
So, why didn't Ewell hear Longstreet? According to physicist and military expert Charles D. Ross, Ewell was likely in the midst of an acoustic shadow, an atmospheric phenomenon caused by a combination of geography, heat and wind by which sound is "stopped" from traveling in one direction, even while it travels well in others.
I will be writing about the three times weather has "saved" America in my Cooter's History Thing and Not So Forgotten: War of 1812 blogs today.
Back on Friday, March 29, 2019, I wrote about a new camp of the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War being named after him. I'd never heard of him, so....
FRANCIS EMROY WARREN (June 20, 1844 - November 24, 1929)
American politician of the Republican Party best known for his years as a U.S. Senator from Wyoming and first governor of that state. A soldier in the Union Army during the Civil War and a Medal of Honor recipient.
Born in Massachusetts and in the 49th Massachusetts during the Civil War as a noncommissioned officer. At the Siege of Port Hudson he received a Medal of Honor for battlefield gallantry. When Confederate artillery devastated his platoon, despite receiving a scalp wound, he disabled the guns.
He later served as a captain in the Massachusetts Militia.
Monday, April 1, 2019
From the March 20, 2019, Washington Post "Weird weather saved America three times" by Gillian Brockell.
In June 1863 Confederate General Lee headed North, hoping a decisive battle might get the peace he wanted for his country. Confederate General James Longstreet was with him and widely blamed for Lee's failure due to his lethargy of action.
But, according to one theory, a bizarre phenomenon occurred known as an "acoustic shadow" may have played a role in the eventual Confederate defeat.
Lee ordered Longstreet to attack the virtually empty Little Round Top. General Ewell's troops was to make a show of force at the other end of the Confederate lines to draw Union attention away from Longstreet. Ewell was to begin his action at the sound of Longstreet's artillery.
And Then? --Old Secesh