Diary of Orrin Brown—Feb 23, 1865

Shiloh Centennial 4c StampDiary of Orrin Brown, on Rocky Creek at the Catawba/Wateree River in South Carolina

Thursday–Feb. 23rd

We were on the road at 8 AM and got a ride in the Ambulance. The weather is cool and cloudy with a little mist. We marched 5 or 6 miles and haulted for the 1st Div. to pass. Our Div. is train guards consequently we have to stay in the rear of the other Divisions. It commenced raining about 4 PM and is still raining this evening. We went into camp about 6 PM in one of the roughest countrys that I ever saw and had to get our supper in the rain. I read 5 Chapt. in the Testament today.

William T. Sherman was unsuited for the situation he found himself in at Louisville in the autumn of 1861, when his friend Gen. Robert Anderson resigned, having succumbed to ill health likely from his experience at Ft. Sumner in South Carolina.  Within six weeks, Sherman was replaced at the head of the Department of the Cumberland by another old friend, Don Carlos Buell.  Prone to depression, his superiors (and family) suspected he was having a nervous breakdown and sent him home to Ohio for rest and relaxation.

Sherman was soon back in the saddle, and back at St. Louis, under command of old California rival and bureaucrat extraordinaire, Henry Halleck.  It was here that Sherman’s long-term partnership with Ulysses S. Grant began, providing logistical support for Grant’s push up the Tennessee and Cumberland rivers in February 1862.  The next month, Sherman was assigned to serve under Grant (although technically the more senior officer) as commander of the 5th Division of the Army of the Tennessee.  Caught unprepared by Confederate Gen. Albert Sidney Johnston on the first day of the Battle of Shiloh, Sherman redeemed himself on the second—historian James M. McPherson considers Shiloh the turning point of Sherman’s career.  Shiloh was the bloodiest American battle until the 3-day Battle of Gettysburg, with 13,000 Union casualties and 10,700 Confederate casualties on the 6-7 April, 1862.



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2 Responses to Diary of Orrin Brown—Feb 23, 1865

  1. Pingback: Diary of Orrin Brown—Feb 25, 1865 -JC Shepard(dot)com

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