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00000174-b11b-ddc3-a1fc-bfdbb1a20000The Schreiner University Department of History is honoring the sesquicentennial of the American Civil War with a series of short vignettes focusing on events from 1861 through 1865. The Civil War was the most destructive conflict in American history, but it was also one of our most defining moments as a people and as a nation. Let us know what you think about "This Week in the Civil War." E-mail your comments to Dr. John Huddleston at jhuddles@schreiner.edu.Airs: Weekdays at 5:19 a.m., 8:19 a.m., 4:19 p.m. on KTXI and 4:49 a.m., 9:29 p.m. on KSTX.

This Week in the Civil War - 587

Union mortar boats at Vicksburg relentlessly bombarded the Confederate defenders and civilian population of that city.

A resident of Vicksburg in early June 1863 described the Federal bombardment, noting “Twenty-four hours of each day these preachers of the Union made their touching remarks to the town.  All night long their deadly hail of iron dropped through roofs and tore up the deserted and denuded streets.”

Vicksburg’s civilians tended not to stay in their homes, opting for the safety of caves dug from hillsides and along the river banks.  Confederate forces were not so lucky; they had to remain on the defensive in Vicksburg’s trenches in order to repel any Union advances on their positions.  The constant strain of risking one’s life while on duty would soon wear down Vicksburg’s defenders.