March 2 1861 Saturday
Dakota Territory Organised
Nevada Territory Organised
USA. In the absence of opposition, the US Congress passed the Morrill Tariff Act, a high protective tariff long opposed by Southern congressmen.
CSA. Texas was formally admitted to the Confederate States of America.
District of Columbia. The Peace Convention sponsored a Constitutional amendment in Congress presented by Senator John J Crittenden, of Kentucky. The proposal is defeated and marks the end and failure of the Peace Convention.
Dakota Territory. The Dakota Territory was organised. It was made of all of the portions of Nebraska Territory north of 43° N, along with the portion of present-day Nebraska between 43° N and the Keya Paha and Niobrara rivers. The act creating the Dakota Territory also included provisions granting Nebraska small portions of Utah Territory and Washington Territory, bounded by 41° N, 110°03′ W (33° W of Washington, D.C.), 43° N, and the Continental Divide. These portions had not been part of the Louisiana Purchase; they had been part of Oregon Country and became part of the United States in 1846.
Nevada Territory. The Nevada Territory was organised. Prior to the creation of the Nevada Territory, the area was part of western Utah Territory and was known as Washoe, after the native Washoe people. The separation of the territory from Utah was important to the federal government because of its political leanings, while the population itself was keen to be separated because of animosity (and sometimes violence) between non-Mormons in Nevada and Mormons from the rest of the Utah Territory. The eastern boundary of Nevada Territory had been defined as the 116th meridian, but when gold discoveries were made to the east the Nevada territorial delegation to Congress requested the boundary moved to the 115th meridian, which Congress granted in 1862. The southern border of Nevada Territory was defined as the 37th parallel. The exact location of the due north-south California-Nevada border, between Lake Tahoe and the intersection of the southern boundary of Oregon at the 42nd parallel, was contentious and was surveyed and re-surveyed many times.
Texas. The US Revenue cutter Henry Dodge was seized in Galveston Bay by Texas state troops.
USA: Nevada Territory and Dakota Territory were included in the Union Department of the Pacific.
Commander in Chief: President James Buchanan
Vice-President: John Cabell Breckinridge
Secretary of War: Joseph Holt
Secretary of the Navy: Isaac Toucey
- African Squadron USN: Captain William Inman USN
- Brazil Squadron USN: Captain Joshua R Sands USN.
- East Indian (Asiatic) Squadron USN: Captain Cornelius K Stribling USN
- European Squadron USN: vacant
- Home Squadron USN: Captain Garrett J Prendergast USN
- Mediterranean Squadron USN: Captain Charles H Bell USN
- Pacific Squadron USN: Captain John B Montgomery USN
General–in-Chief: Winfield Scott
- Department of the East: John Ellis Wool
- Department of New Mexico: Thomas T Fauntleroy interim, William Wing Loring awaited
- Department of the Pacific: Albert Sidney Johnston
- District of Oregon: George Wright
- Department of Texas: Carlos Adolphus Waite temporary
- Department of Utah: Philip St George Cooke
- Department of the West: William Selby Harney
President Jefferson Finis Davis
Vice-President: Alexander Hamilton Stephens
Secretary of War: Leroy Pope Walker
Secretary of the Navy: Stephen Russell Mallory
- “Department of Louisiana”: Braxton Bragg
- “Forces in New Orleans” “Army of Louisiana”: Braxton Bragg
John Ellis Wool
William Selby Harney
Brigadier-General USA (Staff)
Joseph Eggleston Johnston
Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard