Austin Civil War Round Table

Our Next Meeting

When: Thursday, February 15, 2018

Who: Edwin C. Bearss

Where: Covenant Presbyterian Church, 3003 Northland Drive

What:

For many long months in the winter and spring of 1863, Ulysses S. Grant and his Army of the Tennessee tried in vain to wrest away the strategic Confederate river fortress of Vicksburg, Mississippi from Confederate control. Direct attempts to take this important town high above the Mississippi River were blocked by deft rebel counter moves and some of the most pernicious terrain in the entire Western theater. In late April 1863, Grant undertook a new and bold campaign against Vicksburg and the Confederate defenders under John Pemberton. After conducting a surprise landing below Vicksburg at Bruinsburg, Mississippi, Grant's forces moved rapidly inland, pushing back the threat posed by Joseph E. Johnston's forces near Jackson. Once his rear was clear, Grant again turned his sights on Vicksburg.

Union victories at Champion Hill and Big Black Bridge weakened Pemberton's forces, leaving the Confederate chief with no alternative but to retreat to Vicksburg's defenses. The Federals assailed the Rebel stronghold on May 19 and 22, but were repulsed with such great loss that Grant determined to lay siege to the city to avoid further loss of life. Soldiers and civilians alike endured the privations of siege warfare for 47 days before the surrender of Pemberton's forces on July 4, 1863. With the Mississippi River now firmly in Union hands, the Confederacy's fate was all but sealed.

We are honored to have our old friend Ed Bearss here to speak to us about the Siege of Vicksburg. Edwin C. Bearss is a world-renowned military historian, author, and tour guide known for his work on the American Civil War and World War II. A former WWII Marine wounded in the Pacific Theater, Ed served as Chief Historian of the National Park Service from 1981 to 1994 and is the author of dozens of books and articles. He discovered and helped raise the Union warship USS Cairo, which is on display at Vicksburg National Military Park. Please donít miss this talk by a living legend!

Program Location and Details

The meeting will be held at Covenant Presbyterian Church, 3003 Northland Drive. Covenant Presbyterian Church is located at the southeast corner of Northland Drive and Mopac Expressway (Loop 1). To reach Covenant via Mopac, take the RM 2222/Northland exit, then proceed east on Northland Drive. Covenant is on your immediate right.To reach Covenant via I-35, take the FM 2222 West, 238A exit. After you exit on the frontage road, proceed west on Koenig/2222. Head west through Lamar Blvd and Burnet Rd. After Burnet Rd, Koenig becomes Allandale Rd. After you cross Shoal Creek Pkwy, Allandale Rd becomes Northland Drive. Covenant is on Northland Dr on the left before you reach Mopac Expy.

Austin Civil War Round Table - Map of Covenant Church

6:30- 7:15 p.m.    Dinner and Socializing

7:15 - 8:45 p.m.    Announcements/Speaker

8:45 - 9:00 p.m.    Questions and Closing Remarks

Rations

Pulled Pork BBQ, Salad, Vegetables, Dessert, Tea and Coffee. The cost will be $12. To attend the meeting only, the charge is $5 (For non-members, the first meeting is free, and subsequent meetings are $10).

Reservations

Please RSVP by 12 Noon on Tuesday, February 13, by contacting Mike Watkins via telephone at (512) 970-5548. If you must cancel your reservation, you must do so at least 48 hours in advance or you will be responsible for the costs incurred. Also, please let us know if you are attending the meeting but do not plan to join us for dinner. Thanks!

 

Meeting Schedule for 2017-2018

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