Tuesday, June 17, 2014

May 28, 1864

May 28, 1864

---Virginia:  Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia, in a forced march, moves eastward in an effort to get in front of Grant’s army at Cold Harbor, where Lee correctly divines that Grant wants to go.  Cold Harbor is a crossroads important to Grant for approaching Richmond.  Lee decides to keep the Chickahominy River at his back, in order to deny to the Northern forces access to the crossings.


---Battle of Enon Church:  In an effort to learn of Grant’s intentions, Lee orders two cavalry brigades under his son Fitzhugh Lee and Wade Hampton to probe the Federal positions.  As they do so, Federal cavalry discover them, and organie a charge.  The Rebels dismount and form a line, repelling the charges, again and again.  Finally, an additional division in blue is brought up, and Brig. Gen. George Armstrong Custer and his brigade of Michigan regiments makes an attack dismounted, and they overrun the Rebel lines.  The graycoats withdraw and mount up, leaving the Federals exhausted, but victorious.


---Battle of Dallas:  In northern Georgia, sporadic fighting continues all along the lines.  Gen. Hood is ordered to attack the Yankees’ left flank, which is reaching farther to the east—but Hood finds the Yankee fortifications there too firm for an assault.


---George Templeton Strong, of New York City, notes with alarm the impact of the war news on trade and the market:

. . . Gold reached 189 today!  We are in a bad way, unless Grant or Sherman soon win a decisive victory.  But I see no symptoms yet of debility in the backbones of loyal and patriotic men, or, in other words, of the community minus Peace Democrats, McClellan-maniacs, mere traders and capitalists, and the brutal herd of ignorant Celts and profligate bullies and gamblers and “sporting men” that have so large a share in the government of our cities. 

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