Category Archives: Fort Sanders

A soldier poet

Mayst purest pleasures ever be thine, A [something] holy, pure, chaste, divine, Richest of all treasures I’d wish thee given, Youth, beauty, happiness – a home in Heaven. So then-Captain, later Colonel, Kennon McElroy wrote in December, 1861, in an elaborate, … Continue reading

Posted in "Knoxville 1863", Fort Sanders, Thirteenth Mississippi | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Fort Sanders Photographs

The few extant photographs of Fort Sanders, including the cropping atop this page, apparently were taken after the Nov. 29, 1863, battle by George Barnard, the official photographer for Union Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman’s Military Division of the Mississippi. Barnard, … Continue reading

Posted in Crozier House, Fort Sanders, Gen. Ambrose Burnside, Gen. James Longstreet | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

This is Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day came and went without much notice in the late days of the war. Private RobertA. Moore of the 17th Mississippi Regiment which led the attack on Fort Sanders: “This is Valentine’s Day,” Moore wrote in his diary in … Continue reading

Posted in Fort Sanders, Seventeenth Mississippi | Tagged , | Leave a comment

An honor guard

An honor guard for the dead of Fort Sanders as this sesquicentennial period nears its end.

Posted in Fort Sanders, Knoxville, Reenactors | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Strawberry Plains, 1863

The guard on this bridge 20 miles northeast of Knoxville probably is Union but the photo was taken soon after Dec. 3, about the time when Longstreet’s retreating troops passed this way, so who knows? Biggerize the photo with a … Continue reading

Posted in Civil War clothing, Fort Sanders | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

The very ancient design of Fort Sanders

Fort Sanders was the combined work of (first) Confederate engineer  Danville Leadbetter and (second) Union engineer Orlando Poe, with impromptu assistance from Union artilleryman Samuel Nicoll Benjamin. But the overall design, from the fort’s earthen ramparts to the dry ditch surrounding … Continue reading

Posted in Fort Sanders, Gen. Danville Leadbetter, Orlando Poe, Samuel Nicoll Benjamin, The Northwest Bastion | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Of that en barbette gun that greeted the Rebels

Lieutenant Samuel Nicoll Benjamin, who commanded Fort Sanders while its nominal commander, a New York political general, was drunk in his bombproof, arranged several surprises for the attacking Rebels. One was a Napoleon 12-pounder that could be run up a … Continue reading

Posted in "Knoxville 1863", Civil War armament, First Rhode Island Light Artillery, Fort Sanders, Samuel Nicoll Benjamin | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Sharpshooter glasses

You can buy these orange-colored, nickle-plated wire-frame glasses on eBay with the assurance of several books that they were worn by sharpshooters in the Civil War. Ahem. One sharpshooter (today he would be called a sniper) played a prominent role in the 1863 siege … Continue reading

Posted in "Knoxville 1863", Bleak House, Civil War accoutrements, Fort Sanders, Gen. James Longstreet, Gen. William P. Sanders | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment