April 23 1861 Tuesday
Arkansas. Fort Smith was occupied by Arkansas state forces.
District of Columbia. USS Pawnee reached Washington where Commodore Paulding reported the loss of the Norfolk Navy Yard to the Navy Department. The arrival of the modern warship strengthened the Capital’s defences at a critical time.
Maryland. Brigadier-General of Massachusetts Militia offered assistance to the Governor of Maryland who had expressed anxiety about the risk of a slave insurrection.
Missouri. US Army Captain Nathaniel Lyon assumed temporary command of the Department of the West in St Louis. He was responding to doubts about the loyalty of Brigadier-General William Selby Harney who had shown indications of favouring the pro-Confederate factions in Missouri.
Texas. A group of US Army officers and a Company of the 8th US Infantry were taken as prisoners of war at San Antonio. Colonel Carlos Adolphus Waite was among those captured by Confederate authorities and the presence of free Federal forces in Texas was ended. Although the Department of Texas remained in nominal existence, it had no commanding officer and no forces to command.
Virginia. State Major-General Robert Edward Lee took command of the Militia and the Provisional Army of Virginia.
Virginia. Major-General of Virginia Militia Walter Gwynn was directed to take command of forces around Norfolk and the Gosport Navy Yard.
Virginia. Major-General of Virginia Militia Joseph Eggleston Johnston was directed to take command of the Virginia state forces in and around Richmond.
USA: Captain USA Nathaniel Lyon assumed temporary de facto command of the Department of the West to fill the vacancy of Brigadier-General William Selby Harney.
USA: The command of the Department of Texas became vacant when Union Colonel Carlos Adolphus Waite was captured by Confederate authorities.
USA: George Brinton McClellan was appointed Major-General of Ohio Militia.
USA: Colonel James Wolfe Ripley was appointed Chief of Ordnance of the US Army, succeeding Colonel Henry Knox Craig.
Commander in Chief: President Abraham Lincoln
Vice-President: Hannibal Hamlin
Secretary of War: Simon Cameron
Secretary of the Navy: Gideon Welles
Pacific Squadron: John Berrien Montgomery
General–in-Chief: Winfield Scott
Department of the East: John Ellis Wool
Department of Florida: Harvey Brown
Department of New Mexico: William Wing Loring
Department of the Pacific: Albert Sidney Johnston interim Edwin Vose Sumner awaited
- District of Oregon: George Wright
Department of Texas: Vacant
Department of Utah: Philip St George Cooke
Department of Washington: Robert Patterson
Department of the West: Nathaniel Lyon temporary de facto
CSA: Major-General of Virginia State Forces Robert Edward Lee arrived to assume command of the Provisional Army of Virginia.
CSA: Milledge Luke Bonham was promoted to Brigadier-General PACS.
Commander in Chief: President Jefferson Finis Davis
Vice-President: Alexander Hamilton Stephens
Secretary of War: Leroy Pope Walker
Secretary of the Navy: Stephen Russell Mallory
Department of North Carolina: Theophilus Hunter Holmes
- Defences of North Carolina: Theophilus Hunter Holmes
Department of South Carolina: Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard
- “Forces in Charleston”: Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard
Department of Texas: Earl Van Dorn
Department of West Florida: Braxton Bragg
- “Forces in Pensacola”: Braxton Bragg
District of Louisiana: David Emanuel Twiggs
- “Forces in New Orleans” “Army of Louisiana”: Braxton Bragg
Defences of Savannah: Alexander Robert Lawton
Potomac Line: Daniel Ruggles
“Forces in Harper’s Ferry”: Kenton Harper
“Forces in Norfolk”: William Booth Taliaferro
John Ellis Wool
William Selby Harney
Edwin Vose Sumner
Note: Italics, awaiting confirmation of the commission
David Emanuel Twiggs
Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard
Alexander Robert Lawton
Milledge Lake Bonham