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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 - 747

On Tuesday, January 19, 1864, just as President Jefferson Davis had earlier predicted, Union naval vessels made a reconnaissance of Confederate Forts Morgan and Gaines which guarded the mouth of Mobile Bay, Alabama. 

Since the capture of New Orleans by David Farragut, Mobile Bay remained the most prominent port along the Confederate Gulf Coast. Ulysses Grant and other prominent members of the Northern military had urged an attack on Mobile to close the port to blockade running. 

Confederate naval forces under Franklin Buchanan could scarcely be expected to blunt an all-out Union assault by Farragut’s Union ships.  And given the reputation for action which Farragut had, many Confederates feared an immediate assault against the city.  However, the Federal reconnaissance was just that; the anticipated Union attack would not come for months.