1861 May 31st

May 31 1861 Friday

Aquia Creek, VA

Chesapeake Bay Blockade

McClellan’s West Virginia Campaign

Atlantic Ocean. USS Commodore Perry, Lieutenant Enoch G Parrott, captured the Confederate blockade-runner Hannah M Johnson.

Kansas. The Union garrisons which had been ordered to evacuate their forts and posts in the Indian Territory arrived at Fort Leavenworth. The route they followed was named the Chisholm Trail after one of their guides, Jesse Chisholm.

Missouri. Union Brigadier-General Nathaniel Lyon assumed command of the Department of the West, succeeding Brigadier-General William Selby Harney, whose pro-Southern sympathies had brought his loyalty into question. He continued the process of recruiting and arming volunteers to secure the state of Missouri for the Union.

Harney was now the fifth-ranking General in the US Regular Army but he had failed to prevent the organisation of pro-Confederate forces or protect Unionists in Missouri. His loyalty to the Union as a Tennessee native was questioned and he was summoned to Washington, DC. He was captured en route to Washington and was offered a Confederate command, which he declined. His captors released him and allowed him to continue on to Washington. Harney remained in Washington, serving in various administrative positions. It was impossible to offer him an active field command, so he was permitted to retire honourably on 1 August 1863, in recognition of a long and distinguished career.

Lyon’s appointment to command this vital Department and promotion as Brigadier-General indicated the impact he had achieved by his dynamic pro-Union efforts in Missouri as the secession crisis intensified.

Aquia Creek, Virginia. The Union Potomac Flotilla was reinforced during the evening by the powerful warship USS Pawnee, Commander Stephen Clegg Rowan. USS Pawnee added its guns to the continuing naval bombardment of the Confederate batteries at Aquia Creek.

Union Organisation

USA: Brigadier-General USV Nathaniel Lyon assumed command of the Department of the West, succeeding Brigadier-General USA William Selby Harney.

Lyon, Nathaniel / Connecticut / Born 14 July 1818 Ashford, Connecticut / KIA Wilson’s Creek, Missouri 10 August 1861
USMA 1 July 1841 11/52 Infantry / Cadet USMA 1 July 1837 / 2nd Lieutenant USA 2nd US Infantry 1 July 1841 / 1st Lieutenant USA 16 February 1847 / Captain USA 11 June 1851 / Brigadier-General Missouri Militia 12 May 1861 / Brigadier-General USV 17 May 1861 / Brevet Captain USA 20 August 1847 WIA Chapultepec 13 September 1847
Department of the West 23 April 1861-28 April 1861 / Department of the West 31 May 1861-3 July 1861 / Army of the West 2 July 1861-10 August 1861 / 3 July 1861 -24 July 1861 Western Department

Commander in Chief: President Abraham Lincoln

Vice-President: Hannibal Hamlin

Secretary of War: Simon Cameron

Secretary of the Navy: Gideon Welles

Atlantic Blockading Squadron: Silas Horton Stringham
Gulf Blockading Squadron: William Mervine
Pacific Squadron: John Berrien Montgomery
Western Gunboat Flotilla: John Rodgers
Potomac Flotilla: James Harmon Ward

General–in-Chief: Winfield Scott

Department of Annapolis: John Adams Dix

Department of the East: John Ellis Wool

Department of Florida: Harvey Brown

Department of Kentucky: Robert Anderson

Department of New Mexico: Edward Richard Sprigg Canby

Department of Northeastern Virginia: Irvin McDowell

Department of the Ohio: George Brinton McClellan

Department of the Pacific: Edwin Vose Sumner

  • District of Oregon: George Wright

Department of Pennsylvania: Robert Patterson

Department of Texas: Vacant

Department of Utah: Philip St George Cooke

Department of Virginia: Benjamin Franklin Butler

Department of Washington: Joseph King Fenno Mansfield

Department of the West: Nathaniel Lyon

Confederate Organisation

CSA: The Department of Alexandria was discontinued and its territory incorporated into the Department of the Potomac.

CSA: The Department of the Potomac was established, comprising the area of the former Department of Alexandria

CSA: Brigadier-General Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard was appointed to command the Department of the Potomac, arriving on 2 June 1861.

CSA: The Army of the Potomac transferred from the Department of Alexandria to the Department of the Potomac.

CSA: Brigadier-General Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard was appointed to command the Army of the Potomac, arriving on 2 June 1861.

Beauregard, Pierre Gustave Toutant / Louisiana / Born 28 May 1818 St Bernard, Louisiana / Died New Orleans, Louisiana 20 February 1893
USMA 1 July 1838 2/45 Artillery-Engineers / Cadet USMA 1 July 1834 / 2nd Lieutenant USA 1st US Artillery 1 July 1838 / Engineers 7 July 1838 / 1st Lieutenant USA 16 June 1839 / Chief Engineer US Army in Mexico 1847 / Captain USA Engineers 3 March 1853 / Superintendent USMA 23 January 1861-28 January 1861 / Resigned USA 20 February 1861 / Brigadier-General ACSA 1 March 1861 / General ACSA 31 August 1861 to rank from 21 July 1861 / Paroled Greensboro, North Carolina 2 May 1865 / Brevet Captain USA 20 August 1847 / WIA Chapultepec 13 September 1847 Brevet Major USA 13 September 1847
Department of South Carolina 3 March 1861-27 May 1861 / Forces in Charleston (Defences of Charleston) 3 March 1861-27 May 1861 / Department of the Potomac 31 May 1861-2 June 1861 / Alexandria Line 2 June 1861-20 June 1861 / Army of the Potomac 20 June 1861-19 July 1861 / I Corps Potomac 21 July 1861-14 March 1862 / District of the Potomac 22 October 1861-29 January 1862 / Army of Mississippi 5 March 1862-29 March 1862 / Western Department 6 April 1862-26 June 1862 / Army of Mississippi 6 April 1862-6 May 1862 / Department of South Carolina and Georgia 29 August 1862-7 October 1862 / Department of South Carolina Georgia and Florida 7 October 1862-18 April 1864 / Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia 18 April 1864-14 May 1864 / Defences of Drewry’s Bluff 14 May 1864-20 May 1864 / Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia 20 May 1864-27 September 1864/ Defences of Petersburg 27 September 1864-1 October 1864 / Military Division of the West 3 October 1864-16 December 1864  / Army of Tennessee 14 January 1865-22 January 1865 / Chief of Staff Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia 27 February 1865-26 April 1865 / Chief of Staff Department of South Carolina, Georgia and Florida 27 February 1865-26 April 1865 / Chief of Staff Department of Tennessee 27 February 1865-26 April 1865

CSA: Brigadier-General Milledge Luke Bonham assumed temporary command of the Department of the Potomac.

CSA: Brigadier-General Milledge Luke Bonham retained interim command of the Army of the Potomac.

Bonham, Milledge Luke / South Carolina / Born 25 December 1813 Red Bank, South Carolina / Died White Sulfur Springs, North Carolina 27 August 1890
Captain USV South Carolina Infantry 9 April 1836 / Mustered Out USV 7 July 1836 / Major-General South Carolina Militia / Lieutenant-Colonel USA 3 March 1847 / 12th US Infantry 9 April 1847 / Colonel USA 12 August 1847 Discharged USA 25 July 1848 / Major-General South Carolina Militia 10 February 1861 / Brigadier-General PACS 23 April 1861 / Resigned PACS 14 July 1861 / Brigadier-General PACS 14 July 1861 / Resigned PACS 29 January 1862 / Brigadier-General PACS 20 February 1865 to rank from 9 February 1865 / No Record of Parole / WIA Contreras 19 August 1847
Department of Alexandria 21 May 1861-30 May 1861 / Forces in Alexandria 21 May 1861-23 May 1861 / Army of the Potomac 24 May 1861-1 June 1861 / Department of the Potomac 31 May 1861-1 June 1861 / Bonham’s Brigade Alexandria Line 31 May 1861-20 July 1861 / 1st Brigade Army of the Potomac 20 July 1861-22 October 1861 / 1st Brigade Longstreet’s Division Army of the Potomac 22 October 1862-9 November 1862 / 1st Brigade Van Dorn’s Division Army of the Potomac 9 November 1861-10 January 1862 / 1st Division Army of the Potomac 10 January 1862 / Bonham’s Brigade Butler’s Division Hampton’s Cavalry Corps Army of Tennessee 2 April 1865-May 1865

CSA: Major-General David Emanuel Twiggs arrived to command Department No 1.

Twiggs, David Emanuel / Georgia / Born 14 February 1790 Richmond, Georgia / Died Augusta, Georgia 15 July 1862
Captain USA 8th US Infantry 12 March 1812 / Major USA 28th US Infantry 21 September 1814 / Discharged USA 15 June 1815 / Captain USA 7th Infantry 2 December 1815 / 1st US Infantry 14 December 1821 / Major USA 14 May 1825 / Lieutenant-Colonel USA 4th US Infantry 15 July 1831 / Colonel USA 2nd US Dragoons 8 June 1836 / Brigadier-General USA 30 June 1846 / Defected to Confederacy 19 February 1861 / Dismissed USA 1 March 1861 / Major-General PACS 22 May 1861 / Retired PACS 11 October 1861 / Brevet Major USA 2 December 1815 to rank from 21 September 1814 Brevet Major-General USA 23 September 1846
Department of Texas 7 November 1860-18 February 1861 / Department of Louisiana 22 March 1861-15 April 1861 / District of Louisiana 17 April 1861-27 May 1861 / Department No 1 27 May 1861-7 October 1861

CSA: Colonel Daniel Harvey Hill (1st North Carolina Infantry) assumed temporary command of the Department of the Peninsula, succeeding Colonel John Bankhead Magruder.

CSA: Colonel Daniel Harvey Hill assumed temporary command of the Army of the Peninsula, succeeding Colonel John Bankhead Magruder.

Hill, Daniel Harvey / South Carolina / Born 12 July 1821 York, South Carolina / Died Charlotte, North Carolina 24 September 1889
USMA 1 July 1842 28 /56 Artillery-Infantry / Cadet USMA 1 July 1838 / 1st US Artillery 1 July 1842 / 3rd US Artillery 20 October 1843 / 2nd Lieutenant USA 4th US Artillery 13 October 1845 / 1st Lieutenant USA 3 March 1847 / Resigned USA 28 February 1849 / Colonel PACS 1st North Carolina Infantry 10 May 1861 / Brigadier-General PACS 10 July 1861 / Major-General PACS 25 March 1862 to rank from 26 March 1862 / Resigned PACS 1 January 1863 Refused / Lieutenant-General PACS (Special) 11 July 1863 Unconfirmed Expired 11 October 1863 / Reverted Major-General PACS 15 October 1863 / ADC (P G T Beauregard) 5 May 1864-17 May 1864 / ADC (P G T Beauregard) 21 May 1864-13 June 1864 / Assistant Inspector-General 10 July 1864 / Paroled Greensboro, North Carolina 1 May 1865 / Brevet 2nd Lieutenant USA 1 July 1842 Brevet Captain USA 20 August 1847 Brevet Major USA 13 September 1847 / WIA Big Bethel 10 June 1861
Department of South Carolina 27 May 1861-20 August 1861 / Department of the Peninsula 31 May 1861-17 June 1861 / Army of the Peninsula 31 May 1861-17 June 1861 / Department of Fredericksburg 17 July 1861-22 October 1861 / District of Pamlico 29 September 1861-16 November 1861 / Hill’s Division Army of the Peninsula November 1861 / 1st Brigade 3rd Division Department of Northern Virginia 16 November 1861-January 1862 / Hill’s Division District of the Potomac January 1862-March 1862 / 4th Division Army of Northern Virginia 14 March 1862-31 May 1862 / Centre Wing Northern Virginia 14 March 1862-1 June 1862 / Hill’s Division Left Wing Army of Northern Virginia 1 June 1862-10 July 1862 / Department of North Carolina 17 July 1862-19 September 1862 / Valley District 6 September 1862-29 December 1862 / Hill’s Division Defences of Richmond 14 January 1863-26 February 1863 / Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia 14 January 1863-16 February 1863 / Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia 23 February 1863-26 February 1863 / Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia 28 May 1863-1 July 1863 / Department of Richmond 1 July 1863-13 July 1863 / II Corps Tennessee 24 July 1863-14 October 1863 / Hill’s Division Department of Richmond 17 May 1864-21 May 1864 / Assistant Inspector-General Department of North Carolina and Southern Virginia 10 July 1864 / District of Georgia 21 January 1865-10 April 1865 / Army of Tennessee 22 February 1865-16 March 1865 / I Corps Tennessee 16 March 1865-8 April 1865 / Hill’s Division II Corps Army of Tennessee 9 April 1865-26 April 1865

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 No 1: David Emanuel Twiggs

  • “Forces in New Orleans” “Army of Louisiana”: Braxton Bragg

Department of the Potomac: Milledge Luke Bonham temporary Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard awaited

  • Army of the Potomac: Milledge Luke Bonham interim Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard awaited

Department of Norfolk: Benjamin Huger

Department of North Carolina: Theophilus Hunter Holmes

  • Defences of North Carolina: Theophilus Hunter Holmes

Department of the Peninsula: Daniel Harvey Hill temporary

  • Army of the Peninsula: Daniel Harvey Hill temporary

Department of South Carolina: Daniel Harvey Hill

Department of Southwestern Virginia: William Wing Loring

Department of Texas: Earl Van Dorn

Department of West Florida: Braxton Bragg

  • “Forces in Pensacola”: Braxton Bragg

Defences of Savannah: Alexander Robert Lawton

Indian Territory: Benjamin McCulloch

Potomac Line: Daniel Ruggles

Forces in Harper’s Ferry”: Joseph Eggleston Johnston

Forces in Richmond: Thomas Turner Fauntleroy

Forces in the Kanawha Valley: Christopher Quarles Tompkins

Union Generals

Note: Italics, awaiting confirmation of the commission

Major-General USA

Winfield Scott
George Brinton McClellan
John Charles Frémont

Major-General USV

John Adams Dix
Nathaniel Prentiss Banks
Benjamin Franklin Butler

Brigadier-General USA

John Ellis Wool
William Selby Harney
Edwin Vose Sumner
Joseph King Fenno Mansfield
Irvin McDowell
Robert Anderson
William Starke Rosecrans

Brigadier-General USV

Samuel Peter Heintzelman
David Hunter
Erasmus Darwin Keyes
Andrew Porter
Fitz-John Porter
William Buel Franklin
William Tecumseh Sherman
Charles Pomeroy Stone
Don Carlos Buell
Thomas West Sherman
Nathaniel Lyon
John Pope
George Archibald McCall
William Reading Montgomery
Philip Kearny
Joseph Hooker
John Wolcott Phelps
Ulysses Simpson Grant
Joseph Jones Reynolds
Samuel Ryan Curtis
Charles Smith Hamilton
Darius Nash Couch
Rufus King
Jacob Dolson Cox
Stephen Augustus Hurlbut
Franz Sigel
Robert Cumming Schenck
Benjamin Mayberry Prentiss
Frederick West Lander
Benjamin Franklin Kelley
John Alexander McClernand
Alpheus Starkey Williams
Israel Bush Richardson
James Cooper

Brigadier-General USA (Staff)

Montgomery Cunningham Meigs

 Confederate Generals

Note: Italics, awaiting confirmation of the commission

General ACSA

Samuel Cooper
Albert Sidney Johnston

Major-General PACS

David Emanuel Twiggs

Brigadier-General ACSA

Robert Edward Lee
Joseph Eggleston Johnston
Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard
Braxton Bragg

Brigadier-General PACS

Alexander Robert Lawton
Milledge Lake Bonham
Benjamin McCulloch
William Wing Loring
Charles Clark
John Buchanan Floyd
William Henry Talbot Walker

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