Tuesday, April 23, 2013

April 22, 1863

April 22, 1863

---Grierson’s Raid:  With the 7th and 8th Illinois Cavalry Regiments, Col. Grierson pushes further southward toward Louisville, Mississippi.  He detaches B Troop of the 7th Illinois, under Capt. Henry Forbes, to strike at the railroad in Macon, 30 miles to the east.  Grierson and the main column arrive at Louisville late in the day, and find the town boarded and shuttered to the Yankee arrival. 

---George Templeton Strong writes about the war, black troops, and his own thoughts, in his journal, while revealing a surprisingly astute understanding of the role of slavery in propping up the Southern state---and a surprisingly prescient speculation about the future progress of the war:

Then there is the great fact that Negro enlistments seem cordially approved by the Army at the West---at Cairo, Memphis, and elsewhere.  Black regiments are (or soon will be) adopted into the national army with as little objection to their color as would be made to the use of a corral of black horses captured from the rebels, and our consent to let niggers enlist and fight is a heavier blow to the rebels than the annihilation of General Lee’s army would be.

All these indications forbid us to despair of the republic.  But, unlike Seward, I expect no suppression of the rebellion with sixty or ninety days.  Nor do I desire it.  News of overtures of Jefferson Davis & Co. tomorrow would be worse than news of a grea crushing defeat suffered by Hooker, Grant, or Rosecrans.  There can be no stable equilibrium and permanent peace till the peculiar institutions of the South have been broken up and ground to powder, and to do this requires at least two more years of war, and perhaps a period of Southern success and invasion of Northern territory, stimulating the North to begin fighting in earnest, which it has not even yet begun to do.

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