May 7 In Civil War History

Jim Klag

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May 12, 2019
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On this day in Civil War history
Compiled by Mitchell Werksman and Jim Klag

May 7 Birthdays

1826 - Varina Howell Davis, First Lady of the Confederate States (1862-65), born in Natchez, Mississippi (d. 1906)
1827 - Francis Engle Patterson, American Brigadier General (Union Army), born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 1862)

Tuesday May 7 1861
  • With the general population of Tennessee split over secession, a riot breaks out in Knoxville, which results in many injuries and one fatality.
  • The routes between Philadelphia, Harrisburg and Washington, DC, via Baltimore, are re-established.
Wednesday May 7 1862
  • Skirmish at Croghan's Ranch, CA.
  • Maj. Gen. Braxton Bragg, CSA, assumes the command of the Confederate Army of the Mississippi.
  • Skirmish at Horse Creek, MO.
  • Federal expedition from Roanoke Island toward Gatesville, NC, by Col. Rush C. Hawkins, USA. (May 7-8)
  • Skirmish at Purdy, TN.
  • Federal reconnaissance to Mulberry Point, James River, VA, by Maj. Robert Morris, USA, 6th PA Cav. (May 7-8)
  • Action at Somerville Heights, VA, on the south fork of the Shenandoah River, with Maj. Gen. Stonewall Jackson, CSA.
  • Engagement at West Point, Barhamsville, or Eltham's Landing, VA. Maj. Gen. Gustavus Woodson Smith, CSA, retreating from Williamsburg, VA, and Brig. Gen. William Buel Franklin, USA, attacking the Confederate supply train.
  • Skirmish at and near Wardensville, WV, Maj. Gen. John C. Fremont, USA, searching for guerrillas who murdered a party of officers, zouaves, and convalescent soldiers on their way from Winchester to Moorefield.
Thursday May 7 1863
  • Maj. Gen. Earl Van Dorn, CSA, is murdered in his headquarters tent at Spring Hill, TN, by one Dr. Peters for alledgingly committing adultery with Dr. Peters' wife.
  • Maj. Gen. Amiel Weeks Whipple, USA, dies from his stomach wound received at Chancellorsville, VA, on May 4, dying in a Washington, DC, hospital.
  • Skirmish at Cajoude Arivaypo, in the San Andres Mountains, the New Mexico Territory, with Apache Indians.
  • Maj. Gen. John Stoneman's command recrosses Raccoon Ford, VA, ending his Cavalry raid in Virginia.
  • West Point, VA, is occupied by the Union forces.
  • Affair at Cairo Station, WV, with Brig. Gen. William E. "Grumble" Jones, CSA.
  • Affair at Harrisville (Ritchie Court-House), WV, with Brig. Gen. William E. Jones, CSA.
  • President Abraham Lincoln and Maj. Gen. Henry W Halleck, USA, return to Washington, DC, after conferring with Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker, USA.
Saturday May 7 1864
  • Edward Richard Sprigg Canby, U.S.A., is appointed Maj. Gen.
  • Oliver Edwards, USA, is appointed Brig. Gen.
  • August Valentine Kautz, USA, is appointed Brig. Gen.
  • Skirmishes near Florence (May 7), and at Decatur (May 8), AL, as Brig. Gen. John D. Stevenson's, USA, were attacked by the Rebels and forced to withdraw toward Lawrenceburg. (May 7-8)
  • Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman, USA, moves forward toward Dalton, GA, and Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, CSA, Sherman's army located as follows:
    • Army of the Cumberland, Maj. Gen. George H. Thomas, USA, near Ringgold, northwest of Dalton.
    • Army of the Ohio, Maj. Gen. John Schofield, north of Dalton
    • Army of the Tennessee, Maj. Gen. James McPherson northwest of Dalton, GA.
  • Skirmish near Nickajack Gap, GA.
  • Skirmish at Varnell's Station, GA.
  • Skirmish at Bayou Boeuf, LA, the Red River (LA) Campaign.
  • The Military Division of West Mississippi is constituted, under the command of Maj. Gen. Edward R. S. Canby, USA.
  • The US gun-boat, Shawsheen, is captured at Turkey Island, the James River, VA, during Maj. Gen. Benjamin F. Butler's Union operations on the south side of the James River, VA.
  • Lieut. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, USA, breaks off the fighting around the Wilderness, and moves toward Spotyslvania Court House, Gen. Robert E. Lee, CSA, rushing troops to get there first.
  • Maj. Gen. Richard H. Anderson, CSA, is assigned the command of the 1st Confederate Army Corps, the Army of Northern Virginia, as Lieut. Gen. James Longstreet, CSA, is seriously wounded.
Sunday May 7 1865
  • Col. Simon Jones, USA, 93rd US Colored Troops, assumes the command of the Carrollton District, LA.
  • Maj. Gen. William T. Sherman's, USA, army continues Marching northward to Washington, DC, for the final Grand Review of his army.
May 7 Deaths

1884 - Judah P. Benjamin, 3rd Confederate States Secretary of State and 2nd Confederate States Secretary of War, dies at 72 in Paris, France.