Mississippi /ˌmɪsᵻˈsɪpi/ is a state in the southern region of the United States, with part of its southern border formed by the Gulf of Mexico. Its western border is formed by the Mississippi River, the state has a population of approximately 3 million. It is the 32nd most extensive and the 32nd most populous of the 50 United States, located in the center of the state, Jackson is the state capital and largest city, with a population of approximately 175,000 people. The state is heavily forested outside of the Mississippi Delta area, before the American Civil War, most development in the state was along riverfronts, where slaves worked on cotton plantations. After the war, the bottomlands to the interior were cleared, by the end of the 19th century, African Americans made up two-thirds of the Deltas property owners, but timber and railroad companies acquired much of the land after a financial crisis. Clearing altered the Deltas ecology, increasing the severity of flooding along the Mississippi, much land is now held by agribusinesses.
The states catfish aquaculture farms produce the majority of farm-raised catfish consumed in the United States, since the 1930s and the Great Migration, Mississippi has been majority white, albeit with the highest percentage of black residents of any U. S. state. From the early 19th century to the 1930s, its residents were mostly black, whites retained political power through Jim Crow laws. In 2010, 37% of Mississippians were African Americans, the highest percentage of African Americans in any U. S. state, since gaining enforcement of their voting franchise in the late 1960s, most African Americans support Democratic candidates in local and national elections. Conservative whites have shifted to the Republican Party, African Americans are a majority in many counties of the Mississippi-Yazoo Delta, an area of historic settlement during the plantation era. Since 2011 Mississippi has been ranked as the most religious state in the country, the states name is derived from the Mississippi River, which flows along its western boundary.
Settlers named it after the Ojibwe word misi-ziibi, in addition to its namesake, major rivers in Mississippi include the Big Black River, the Pearl River, the Yazoo River, the Pascagoula River, and the Tombigbee River. Major lakes include Ross Barnett Reservoir, Arkabutla Lake, Sardis Lake, Mississippi is entirely composed of lowlands, the highest point being Woodall Mountain, in the foothills of the Cumberland Mountains,807 feet above sea level. The lowest point is sea level at the Gulf coast, the states mean elevation is 300 feet above sea level. Most of Mississippi is part of the East Gulf Coastal Plain, the coastal plain is generally composed of low hills, such as the Pine Hills in the south and the North Central Hills. The Pontotoc Ridge and the Fall Line Hills in the northeast have somewhat higher elevations, yellow-brown loess soil is found in the western parts of the state. The northeast is a region of black earth that extends into the Alabama Black Belt. The coastline includes large bays at Bay St.
Louis, the northwest remainder of the state consists of the Mississippi Delta, a section of the Mississippi Alluvial Plain
Union (American Civil War)
The Union was opposed by 11 southern slave states that formed the Confederate States, or the Confederacy. All of the Unions states provided soldiers for the U. S. Army, the Border states played a major role as a supply base for the Union invasion of the Confederacy. The Northeast provided the resources for a mechanized war producing large quantities of munitions and supplies. The Midwest provided soldiers, horses, financial support, Army hospitals were set up across the Union. Most states had Republican governors who energetically supported the war effort, the Democratic Party strongly supported the war in 1861 but in 1862 was split between the War Democrats and the anti-war element led by the Copperheads. The Democrats made major gains in 1862 in state elections. They lost ground in 1863, especially in Ohio, in 1864 the Republicans campaigned under the National Union Party banner, which attracted many War Democrats and soldiers and scored a landslide victory for Lincoln and his entire ticket.
The war years were quite prosperous except where serious fighting and guerrilla warfare took place along the southern border, prosperity was stimulated by heavy government spending and the creation of an entirely new national banking system. The Union states invested a great deal of money and effort in organizing psychological and social support for soldiers wives, widows and for the soldiers themselves. Most soldiers were volunteers, although after 1862 many volunteered to escape the draft, Draft resistance was notable in some larger cities, especially New York City with its massive anti-draft riots of 1863 and in some remote districts such as the coal mining areas of Pennsylvania. In the context of the American Civil War, the Union is sometimes referred to as the North and now, as opposed to the Confederacy, which was the South. The Union never recognized the legitimacy of the Confederacys secession and maintained at all times that it remained entirely a part of the United States of America, in foreign affairs the Union was the only side recognized by all other nations, none of which officially recognized the Confederate government.
The term Union occurs in the first governing document of the United States, the subsequent Constitution of 1787 was issued and ratified in the name not of the states, but of We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union. Union, for the United States of America, is repeated in such clauses as the Admission to the Union clause in Article IV. Even before the war started, the preserve the Union was commonplace. Using the term Union to apply to the non-secessionist side carried a connotation of legitimacy as the continuation of the political entity. In comparison to the Confederacy, the Union had a large industrialized and urbanized area, the Union states had a manpower advantage of 5 to 2 at the start of the war. Year by year, the Confederacy shrank and lost control of increasing quantities of resources, the Union turned its growing potential advantage into a much stronger military force
Western Theater of the American Civil War
The Western Theater served as an avenue of military operations by Union armies directly into the agricultural heartland of the South via the major rivers of the region. The Confederacy was forced to defend an area with limited resources. Union operations began with securing Kentucky in Union hands in September 1861, Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Chattanooga served as the launching point for Maj. Gen. William T. The Western Theater was an area defined by geography and the sequence of campaigning. It originally represented the area east of the Mississippi River and west of the Appalachian Mountains, Operations west of the Mississippi River were in the Trans-Mississippi Theater. The West was by some measures the most important theater of the war, capture of the Mississippi River has been one of the key tenets of Union General-in-Chief Winfield Scotts Anaconda Plan. Union generals consistently outclassed most of their Confederate opponents, with the exception of cavalry commander Nathan Bedford Forrest. Lacking the proximity to the capitals and population centers of the East, the astounding Confederate victories.
McClellan, and Stonewall Jackson, the Western theater received considerably less attention than the Eastern, the near-steady progress that Union forces made in defeating Confederate armies in the West and overtaking Confederate territory went nearly unnoticed. The campaign classification established by the United States National Park Service is more fine-grained than the one used in this article, some minor NPS campaigns have been omitted and some have been combined into larger categories. Only a few of the 117 battles the NPS classifies for this theater are described, boxed text in the right margin show the NPS campaigns associated with each section. The focus early in the war was on two states and Kentucky. The loss of either would have been a blow to the Union cause. Primarily because of the successes of Captain Nathaniel Lyon and his victory at Boonville in June, the state of Kentucky, with a pro-Confederate governor and a pro-Union legislature, had declared neutrality between the opposing sides.
This neutrality was first violated on September 3, when Confederate Maj. Gen. Leonidas Polk occupied Columbus, two days Union Brig. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, displaying the personal initiative that would characterize his career, seized Paducah. On the Confederate side, General Albert Sidney Johnston commanded all forces from Arkansas to the Cumberland Gap, Johnston gained political support from secessionists in central and western counties of Kentucky via a new Confederate capital at Bowling Green, set up by the Russellville Convention. The alternative government was recognized by the Confederate government, which admitted Kentucky into the Confederacy in December 1861, using the rail system resources of the Mobile and Ohio Railroad, Polk was able to quickly fortify and equip the Confederate base at Columbus. By January 1862, this disunity of command was apparent because no strategy for operations in the Western theater could be agreed upon, James A. Garfield and Mill Springs under Brig. Gen. George H.
Battle of Perryville
Confederate Gen. Braxton Braggs Army of Mississippi initially won a tactical victory against primarily a single corps of Maj. Gen. Don Carlos Buells Union Army of the Ohio. The battle is considered a strategic Union victory, sometimes called the Battle for Kentucky, the Union retained control of the critical border state of Kentucky for the remainder of the war. On October 7, Buells army, in pursuit of Bragg, Union forces first skirmished with Confederate cavalry on the Springfield Pike before the fighting became more general, on Peters Hill, when the Confederate infantry arrived. Both sides were desperate to get access to fresh water, the next day, at dawn, fighting began again around Peters Hill as a Union division advanced up the pike, halting just before the Confederate line. After noon, a Confederate division struck the Union left flank—the I Corps of Maj. Gen. Alexander M. McCook—and forced it to fall back. When more Confederate divisions joined the fray, the Union line made a stand, counterattacked.
Buell, several miles behind the action, was unaware that a battle was taking place. The Union troops on the flank, reinforced by two brigades, stabilized their line, and the Confederate attack sputtered to a halt. Later, three Confederate regiments assaulted the Union division on the Springfield Pike but were repulsed and fell back into Perryville, Union troops pursued, and skirmishing occurred in the streets until dark. By that time, Union reinforcements were threatening the Confederate left flank, short of men and supplies, withdrew during the night, and continued the Confederate retreat by way of Cumberland Gap into East Tennessee. Considering the casualties relative to the strengths of the armies. It was the largest battle fought in the state of Kentucky, in September 1861, Kentucky-born President Abraham Lincoln wrote in a private letter, I think to lose Kentucky is nearly to lose the whole game. This neutrality was first violated on September 3,1861, when Confederate Maj. Gen. Leonidas Polk occupied Columbus, two days Union Brig.
Gen. Ulysses S. Grant seized Paducah. Henceforth, the proclaimed neutrality was a dead letter, while the state never seceded from the Union, Confederate sympathizers who were members of the legislature set up a temporary Confederate capital in Bowling Green in November 1861. It never wielded significant power inside the state, the Confederate States recognized Kentucky and added a star representing the state to the Confederate flag. The initiative to invade Kentucky came primarily from Confederate Maj. Gen. Edmund Kirby Smith and he believed the campaign would allow them to obtain supplies, enlist recruits, divert Union troops from Tennessee, and claim Kentucky for the Confederacy. In July 1862 Col. John Hunt Morgan carried out a cavalry raid in the state. The raid caused considerable consternation in Buells command and in Washington, during the raid and his forces were cheered and supported by many residents
Army of Northern Virginia
It was most often arrayed against the Union Army of the Potomac. The name Army of Northern Virginia referred to its area of operation. The Army originated as the Army of the Potomac, which was organized on June 20,1861, on July 20 and July 21, the Army of the Shenandoah and forces from the District of Harpers Ferry were added. Units from the Army of the Northwest were merged into the Army of the Potomac between March 14 and May 17,1862, the Army of the Potomac was renamed Army of Northern Virginia on March 14. The Army of the Peninsula was merged into it on April 12,1862, Robert E. Lees biographer, Douglas S. Freeman, asserts that the army received its final name from Lee when he issued orders assuming command on June 1,1862. However, Freeman does admit that Lee corresponded with Joseph E. Johnston, his predecessor in command, prior to that date. In addition to Virginians, it included regiments from all over the Confederacy, some from as far away as Georgia, the first commander of the Army of Northern Virginia was General P. G. T.
Beauregard from June 20 to July 20,1861 and his forces consisted of six brigades, with various militia and artillery from the former Department of Alexandria. During his command, Gen. Beauregard is noted for creating the flag of the army. The flag was designed due to confusion during battle between the Confederate Stars and Bars flag and the flag of the United States, the following day this army fought its first major engagement in the First Battle of Manassas. With the merging of the Army of the Shenandoah, Gen. Joseph E. Johnston took command from July 20,1861, First Corps – commanded by General P. G. T. Magruder Reserve – commanded by Maj. Gen. G. W. Smith Under the command of Johnston, on October 22,1861, the Department of Northern Virginia was officially created, officially ending the Army of the Potomac. The Department comprised three districts, Aquia District, Potomac District, and the Valley District, in April 1862 the Department was expanded to include the Departments of Norfolk and the Peninsula.
Gen. Maj. Gen. Gustavus Woodson Smith commanded the ANV on May 31,1862, with Smith seemingly having a nervous breakdown, President Jefferson Davis drafted orders to place Gen. Robert E. Lee in command the following day. In the first year of his command, Lee had two principal subordinate commanders, the right wing of the army was under the command of Lt. Gen. James Longstreet and the left wing under Lt. Gen. Thomas J. Stonewall Jackson. These wings were redesignated as the First Corps and Second Corps on November 6,1862. Following Jacksons death after the Battle of Chancellorsville, Lee reorganized the army into three corps on May 30,1863, under Longstreet, Lt. Gen. Richard S. Ewell, and Lt. Gen. A. P. Hill. A Fourth Corps, under Lt. Gen. Richard H. Anderson, was organized on October 19,1864, on April 8,1865, the commanders of the first three corps changed frequently in 1864 and 1865
The Union Army was the land force that fought for the Union during the American Civil War,1861 to 1865. It included the permanent regular army of the United States, which was augmented by numbers of temporary units consisting of volunteers as well as conscripts. The Union Army fought and eventually defeated the Confederate Army during the war, at least two and a half million men served in the Union Army, almost all were volunteers. About 360,000 Union soldiers died from all causes,280,000 were wounded and 200,000 deserted. When the American Civil War began in April 1861, there were only 16,000 men in the U. S. Army, and of these many Southern officers resigned and joined the Confederate army. The U. S. Army consisted of ten regiments of infantry, four of artillery, Lincolns call forced the border states to choose sides, and four seceded, making the Confederacy eleven states strong. The war proved to be longer and more extensive than anyone North or South had expected, the call for volunteers initially was easily met by patriotic Northerners and even immigrants who enlisted for a steady income and meals.
Over 10,000 Germans in New York and Pennsylvania immediately responded to Lincolns call, as more men were needed, the number of volunteers fell and both money bounties and forced conscription had to be turned to. Nevertheless, between April 1861 and April 1865, at least two and a million men served in the Union Army, of whom the majority were volunteers. It is a misconception that the South held an advantage because of the percentage of professional officers who resigned to join the Confederate army. At the start of the war, there were 824 graduates of the U. S, Military Academy on the active list, of these,296 resigned or were dismissed, and 184 of those became Confederate officers. Of the approximately 900 West Point graduates who were civilians,400 returned to the Union Army and 99 to the Confederate. Therefore, the ratio of Union to Confederate professional officers was 642 to 283, the South did have the advantage of other military colleges, such as The Citadel and Virginia Military Institute, but they produced fewer officers.
The Union Army was composed of numerous organizations, which were generally organized geographically, Military Division A collection of Departments reporting to one commander. Military Divisions were similar to the modern term Theater, and were modeled close to, though not synonymous with. Department An organization that covered a region, including responsibilities for the Federal installations therein. Those named for states usually referred to Southern states that had been occupied and it was more common to name departments for rivers or regions. District A subdivision of a Department, there were Subdistricts for smaller regions
Confederate States Army
The Confederate States Army was the military ground force of the Confederate States of America during the American Civil War. S. Military Academy and colonel of a regiment during the Mexican War. In March 1861, the Provisional Confederate Congress established a more permanent Confederate States Army, the better estimates of the number of individual Confederate soldiers are between 750,000 and 1,000,000 men. This does not include a number of slaves who were pressed into performing various tasks for the army, such as construction of fortifications. Since these figures include estimates of the number of individual soldiers who served at any time during the war. These numbers do not include men who served in Confederate naval forces, although most of the soldiers who fought in the American Civil War were volunteers, both sides by 1862 resorted to conscription, primarily as a means to force men to register and to volunteer. In the absence of records, estimates of the percentage of Confederate soldiers who were draftees are about double the 6 percent of Union soldiers who were conscripts.
Confederate casualty figures are incomplete and unreliable, one estimate of Confederate wounded, which is considered incomplete, is 194,026. These numbers do not include men who died from causes such as accidents. Other Confederate forces surrendered between April 16,1865 and June 28,1865, by the end of the war, more than 100,000 Confederate soldiers had deserted. The Confederacys government effectively dissolved when it fled Richmond in April, by the time Abraham Lincoln took office as President of the United States on March 4,1861, the seven seceding slave states had formed the Confederate States. The Confederacy seized federal property, including nearly all U. S. Army forts, Lincoln was determined to hold the forts remaining under U. S. control when he took office, especially Fort Sumter in the harbor of Charleston, South Carolina. Under orders from Confederate President Jefferson Davis, C. S. troops under the command of General P. G. T, Beauregard bombarded Fort Sumter on April 12–13,1861, forcing its capitulation on April 14.
The Northern states were outraged by the Confederacys attack and demanded war and it rallied behind Lincolns call on April 15, for all the states to send troops to recapture the forts from the secessionists, to put down the rebellion and to preserve the Union intact. Four more slave states joined the Confederacy. The Confederate Congress provided for a Confederate army patterned after the United States Army and it was to consist of a large provisional force to exist only in time of war and a small permanent regular army. Although the two forces were to exist concurrently, very little was done to organize the Confederate regular army, the Provisional Army of the Confederate States began organizing on April 27. Virtually all regular and conscripted men preferred to enter this organization since officers could achieve a rank in the Provisional Army than they could in the Regular Army
Battle of Shiloh
The Battle of Shiloh, known as the Battle of Pittsburg Landing, was a major battle in the Western Theater of the American Civil War, fought April 6–7,1862, in southwestern Tennessee. A Union force known as the Army of the Tennessee under Major General Ulysses S. T. Beauregard, launched an attack on Grants army from its base in Corinth. Johnston was killed in action during the fighting, who succeeded to command of the army. Overnight Grant was reinforced by one of his own divisions stationed further north and was joined by three divisions from another Union army under Maj. Gen. Don Carlos Buell. This allowed them to launch a counterattack the next morning which completely reversed the Confederate gains of the previous day. On April 6, the first day of the battle, the Confederates struck with the intention of driving the Union defenders away from the river, Johnston hoped to defeat Grants army before the anticipated arrival of General Buells Army of the Ohio. The Confederate battle lines became confused during the fighting, and Grants men instead fell back to the northeast.
A Union position on a sunken road, nicknamed the Hornets Nest. Benjamin Prentisss and William H. L. Wallaces divisions, provided critical time for the remainder of the Union line to stabilize under the protection of artillery batteries. Wallace was mortally wounded when the position collapsed, while several regiments from the two divisions were surrounded and surrendered. General Johnston was shot in the leg and bled to death while leading an attack. Beauregard, his second in command, acknowledged how tired the army was from the days exertions, Confederate forces were forced to retreat from the area, ending their hopes of blocking the Union advance into northern Mississippi. Smiths orders were to lead raids intended to capture or damage the railroads in southwestern Tennessee, Brig. Gen. William T. Shermans troops arrived from Paducah, Kentucky, to conduct a similar mission to break the railroads near Eastport, Mississippi. Halleck ordered Grant to advance his Army of West Tennessee on an invasion up the Tennessee River, Grant left Fort Henry and headed upriver, arriving at Savannah, Tennessee, on March 14, and established his headquarters on the east bank of the river.
Grants troops set up camp farther upriver, five divisions at Pittsburg Landing, meanwhile, Hallecks command was enlarged through consolidation of Grants and Buells armies and renamed the Department of the Mississippi. With Buells Army of the Ohio under his command, Halleck ordered Buell to concentrate with Grant at Savannah, Buell began a march with much of his army from Nashville and headed southwest toward Savannah. The railroad was a supply line connecting the Mississippi River at Memphis, Tennessee to Richmond. Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant developed a reputation during the war for being concerned with his own plans than with those of the enemy
Leonidas Polk was a Confederate general in Western Theater the American Civil War who was once a planter in Maury County, and a second cousin of President James K. Polk. He served as bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Louisiana and was for that reason known as Sewanees Fighting Bishop and he is often erroneously named Leonidas K. Polk. He had no name and never signed any documents as such. The errant K was derived from his listing in the post-bellum New Orleans press as Polk, Polk was one of the more notable, yet controversial, political generals of the war. He is remembered for his disagreements with his immediate superior, the likewise-controversial General Braxton Bragg of the Army of Tennessee. While serving under the command of General Joseph E. Johnston, Polk was born in Raleigh, North Carolina, to Sarah Polk and Colonel William Polk, a Revolutionary War veteran and prosperous planter. He was of Scottish and Scotch-Irish ancestry, capitalizing on his position as chief surveyor of the central district of Tennessee, William was able to acquire about 100,000 acres of land.
Polk attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill briefly before entering the United States Military Academy at West Point. During his senior year, he joined the Episcopal Church, baptized in the Academy Chapel by Chaplain Charles P. McIlvaine, Polk had an impressive academic record, excelling in rhetoric and moral philosophy. He graduated eighth of 38 cadets on July 1,1827, Polk resigned his commission on December 1,1827, so that he could enter the Virginia Theological Seminary. He became an assistant to Bishop Richard Channing Moore at Monumental Church in Richmond, Moore agreed to ordain Polk as a deacon in April 1830 however on a visit to Raleigh in March it was discovered that he had never been confirmed. To remedy the fact before his ordination he was confirmed at St. Johns Episcopal Church in Fayetteville. He was ordained a deacon as planned and a priest the following year, on May 6,1830, Polk married Frances Ann Devereux, daughter of John Devereux and Frances Pollock, her mother was the granddaughter of Puritan theologian Jonathan Edwards.
The Polks had eight children who survived to adulthood, in 1832, Polk moved his family to the vast Polk Rattle and Snap tract in Maury County and constructed a massive Greek Revival home called Ashwood Hall. Polk was the largest slaveholder in the county in 1840, with 111 slaves, with his four brothers in Maury County, he built a family chapel, St. Johns Church, at Ashwood. He served as priest of St. Peters Church in Columbia and he was appointed Missionary Bishop of the Southwest in September 1838 and was elected Bishop of Louisiana in October 1841. Polk laid and consecrated the cornerstone for the first building on October 9,1860, Polks foundational legacy at Sewanee is remembered always through his portrait Sword Over the Gown, painted by Eliphalet F. Andrews in 1900. After the original was vandalized in 1998, a copy by Connie Erickson was unveiled on June 1,2003, at the outbreak of the Civil War, Polk pulled the Louisiana Convention out of the Episcopal Church of the United States
Confederate States of America
The Confederate States, officially the Confederate States of America, commonly referred to as the Confederacy, was a breakaway country of 11 secessionist slave states existing from 1861 to 1865. It was never recognized as an Independent country, although it achieved belligerent status by Britain. A new Confederate government was established in February 1861 before Lincoln took office in March, after the Civil War began in April, four slave states of the Upper South – Virginia, Arkansas and North Carolina – declared their secession and joined the Confederacy. The government of the United States rejected the claims of secession, the Civil War began with the April 12,1861, Confederate attack upon Fort Sumter, a Union fort in the harbor of Charleston, South Carolina. In spring 1865, after four years of fighting which led to an estimated 620,000 military deaths, all the Confederate forces surrendered. Jefferson Davis lamented that the Confederacy had disappeared in 1865, Missouri and Kentucky were represented by partisan factions from those states, while the legitimate governments of those two states retained formal adherence to the Union.
Also fighting for the Confederacy were two of the Five Civilized Tribes located in Indian Territory and a new, but uncontrolled, Confederate Territory of Arizona. Efforts by certain factions in Maryland to secede were halted by federal imposition of law, while Delaware, though of divided loyalty. A Unionist government in parts of Virginia organized the new state of West Virginia. With the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1,1863, the Union made abolition of slavery a war goal, as Union forces moved southward, large numbers of plantation slaves were freed. Many joined the Union lines, enrolling in service as soldiers and laborers, the most notable advance was Shermans March to the Sea in late 1864. Much of the Confederacys infrastructure was destroyed, including telegraphs, plantations in the path of Shermans forces were severely damaged. Internal movement became increasingly difficult for Southerners, weakening the economy and these losses created an insurmountable disadvantage in men and finance.
Public support for Confederate President Jefferson Daviss administration eroded over time due to repeated military reverses, economic hardships, after four years of campaigning, Richmond was captured by Union forces in April 1865. Shortly afterward, Confederate General Robert E. Lee surrendered to Union General Ulysses S. Grant, President Davis was captured on May 10,1865, and jailed in preparation for a treason trial that was ultimately never held. The U. S. government began a process known as Reconstruction which attempted to resolve the political and constitutional issues of the Civil War. By 1877, the Compromise of 1877 ended Reconstruction in the former Confederate states, Confederate veterans had been temporarily disenfranchised by Reconstruction policy. The prewar South had many areas, the war left the entire region economically devastated by military action, ruined infrastructure
P. G. T. Beauregard
Beauregard was a Southern military officer, inventor, civil servant, and the first prominent general of the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. Today he is referred to as P. G. T. Beauregard. He signed correspondence as G. T. Beauregard, trained as a civil engineer at the United States Military Academy, Beauregard served with distinction as an engineer in the Mexican–American War. He commanded the defenses of Charleston, South Carolina, at the start of the Civil War at Fort Sumter on April 12,1861, three months he won the First Battle of Bull Run near Manassas, Virginia. Beauregard commanded armies in the Western Theater, including at the Battle of Shiloh in Tennessee, and he returned to Charleston and defended it in 1863 from repeated naval and land attacks by Union forces. His influence over Confederate strategy was lessened by his professional relationships with President Jefferson Davis. In April 1865, Beauregard and his commander, General Joseph E. Johnston, convinced Davis, Johnston surrendered most of the remaining armies of the Confederacy, including Beauregard and his men, to Major General William T.
Sherman. Following his military career, Beauregard returned to Louisiana, where he served as a railroad executive, Beauregard was born at the Contreras sugar-cane plantation in St. Bernard Parish, about 20 miles outside New Orleans, to a French Creole family. He had three brothers and three sisters, Beauregard attended New Orleans private schools and went to a French school in New York City. During his four years in New York, beginning at age 12, he learned to speak English and he attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. One of his instructors was Robert Anderson, who became the commander of Fort Sumter. Upon enrolling at West Point, Beauregard dropped the hyphen from his surname and treated Toutant as a middle name, from that point on, he rarely used his first name, preferring G. T. Beauregard. He graduated second in his class in 1838 and excelled both as an artilleryman and military engineer and his Army friends gave him many nicknames, Little Creole, Little Frenchman and Little Napoleon.
During the Mexican–American War, Beauregard served as an engineer under General Winfield Scott and he was appointed brevet captain for the battles of Contreras and Churubusco and major for Chapultepec, where he was wounded in the shoulder and thigh. He was noted for his eloquent performance in a meeting with Scott in which he convinced the general officers to change their plan for attacking the fortress of Chapultepec. He was one of the first officers to enter Mexico City, Beauregard returned from Mexico in 1848. For the next 12 years, he was in charge of what the Engineer Department called the Mississippi, much of his engineering work was done elsewhere, repairing old forts and building new ones on the Florida coast and in Mobile, Alabama. He improved the defenses of Forts St. Philip and Jackson on the Mississippi River below New Orleans and he worked on a board of Army and Navy engineers to improve the navigation of the shipping channels at the mouth of the Mississippi