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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 - #995

  Desperate to retain his command of the Union Army of the James in the aftermath of the failed Wilmington, North Carolina invasion, General Benjamin Butler had ordered a canal cut to bypass a large bend in the James River at Dutch Gap, Virginia, hoping to move his forces closer to Richmond.  On Sunday, January 1, 1865 he ordered a massive powder blast to complete the excavation.  The powder was ignited, but with no significant results. Dirt showered the area but fell harmlessly back into the ditch without diverting the James.  The whole project was subsequently dropped; Butler, who earlier in the war seemingly could do nothing wrong, now seemed to do nothing right.  Within a week, the controversial Butler would be removed from command, ending his military career.