The Civil War in the Jackson Purchase, 1861–1862

The Pro-Confederate Struggle and Defeat in Southwest Kentucky

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About the Book

The Jackson Purchase is the far western section of Kentucky. In 1861, it was a rich agricultural and iron producing region. It also controlled the mouths of the Ohio, Cumberland, and Tennessee rivers, as well as that middle stretch of the mighty Mississippi where it transitions from a northern to a southern river. The Purchase was the riverine gateway to the Deep South. The obvious military importance of the region caused both the Federal and Confederate governments to pour material resources and military talent into the Purchase in an effort to hold it and defend it against the incursions of their enemies.
The Jackson Purchase was the Civil War training ground of such army officers as U.S. Grant, C.F. Smith, Leonidas Polk, Lloyd Tilghman, and the navy’s own Andrew H. Foote, commander of the Federal “Brown Water Navy.” Four major amphibious battles were fought for control of the area: Columbus-Belmont, Fort Henry, Fort Donelson, and Island Number Ten. This book tells the story of the bloody years 1861 and 1862 and the tense, contested Union occupation that followed in the region known as “The South Carolina of Kentucky.”

About the Author(s)

Dan Lee has degrees in history from Murray State University and Western Kentucky University. He lives in Hardin County, Kentucky.

Bibliographic Details

Dan Lee
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 256
Bibliographic Info: 13 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2014
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7782-1
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1271-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments ix

Preface 1

Introduction: The Antebellum Jackson Purchase (1820–1860) 3

1. The Secession Crisis (November 1860–August 1861) 13

2. The Federals and the Confederates Make Their Opening Moves (April–August 1861) 20

3. Stalemate (August–September 1861) 30

4. Invasions (September 1861) 40

5. Columbus (September–October 1861) 47

6. The Battle of Columbus–Belmont (November 1861) 57

7. With General C.F. Smith in Paducah (November–December 1861) 73

8. Grant and Polk After the Battle of Columbus–Belmont (November–December 1861) 80

9. The Federal Expedition ( January 1862) 96

10. The Attack on Fort Henry and Fort Heiman (February 1862) 106

11. Between Two Battles (February 1862) 119

12. The Battle of Fort Donelson (February 1862) 131

13. The Surrender of Fort Donelson (February 1862) 146

14. Reconnoiters and Evacuations (February–March 1862) 154

15. Island Number Ten (March–April 1862) 161

16. Rebel Incursions and Yankee Injustices (1862–1865) 188

Afterword 210

Chapter Notes 213

Bibliography 227

Index 237

Book Reviews & Awards

“a solid part of any Civil War library”—The Journal of Southern History; “there is much here that deserves praise…ably executed and substantial…captivating”—Register of the Kentucky Historical Society.