August 1st: Admiral David Porter assumed command of Federal naval forces on the Mississippi River. That same day, Union forces began a sustained bombardment of entrenchments surrounding the vital port of Charleston.
On that same day, Union General Frederick Steele launched the Little Rock campaign, to capture the Arkansas capital.
The next day, Lee's retreat from Gettysburg, and Meade's less-than-enthusiastic pursuit ended with both lines stabilized on either side of the Rappahannock River.
On August 5th, President Lincoln sent a letter to Nathaniel Banks stating that he would never return a negro freed under the Emancipation Proclamation to slavery.
Three days later, on the 8th, General Lee, in response to the Confederate defeat at Gettysburg, submits his resignation to President Jefferson Davis. Davis refuses to allow his best General to leave the fight.
On that same day, Tennessee's Military Governor, Andrew Johnson, freed his personal slaves.
Former slave and abolitionist Frederick Douglass met with President Lincoln on August 10th, discussing treatment and pay of black soldiers in the Union Army.
On August 11th, Southern forces opened a heavy barrage of Federal entrenchments on Morris Island near Charleston. The next day, Federals responded with a cannonade of their own that lasted for the better part of four days. This barrage climaxed on the 17th when the Union employed a massive 200-lb rifled cannon called the Swamp Angel. This barrage actually breached the thick walls of Fort Sumter, but the fort was not attacked by infantry. This was the heaviest assault, but Union artillery would continue firing on Charleston positions until September of 1864.
In response to the Emancipation Proclamation, Union General Thomas Ewing ordered the freeing of slaves belonging to Missourians linked to the Confederacy on August 18th.
300 guerillas led by Quantrill leave Blackwater Creek for Lawrence, Kansas.
August 21st saw the Confederate torpedo boat (some may call it a submarine) made a partially successful attack on the Union ironclad USS New Ironsides. Water from the torpedo's explosion put out the boiler fires on the David, but the fires were eventually lit and the David was able to escape. Damage to the Union ship was significant, but did not sink the vessel.
Also on the 21at, Quantrill's Raiders attack Lawrence, Kansas, killing every male they could find (183 men and boys). In response to the raid, General Thomas Ewing ordered civilians in four Missouri counties to leave their homes. Union troops then burned their homes, barns, and crops. This may have been the incident portrayed at the beginning of the Clint Eastwood movie "The Outlaw Josey Wales."
On August 29th, the Union Army of the Cumberland under William S. Rosecrans started the Chickamauga campaign.
- Husband, father, grandfather, friend...a few of the roles acquired in 61 years of living. I keep an upbeat attitude, loving humor and the singular freedom of a perfect laugh. I don't let curmudgeons ruin my day; that only gives them power over me. Having experienced death once, I no longer fear it, although I am still frightened by the process of dying. I love to write because it allows me the freedom to vent those complex feelings that bounce restlessly off the walls of my mind; and express the beauty that can only be found within the human heart.