Federal combined operation against a Confederate position on the Arkansas river that succeeded but at too high a cost for General Grant, who ordered a withdrawal.
The ‘Mud March’ – a failed offensive by the Army of the Potomac, foiled by heavy rain and mud. Soon afterwards Burnside was replaced by General Joe Hooker.
Part of Grant’s Vicksburg campaign in which a small Confederate army of 6,000 was defeated by 23,000 Union soldiers.
A Confederate victory that ended a Union offensive and opened the chance of a Confederate invasion of the north.
Start of the Big Black River campaign, aimed at the capture of Vicksburg, the key to the Mississippi.
First battle during the Big Black River campaign
Second victory for Grant during his Vicksburg campaign.
Union victory in Grant’s Vicksburg campaign that defeated General Pemberton’s mobile army defending Vicksburg.
Second defeat inflicted on the remnants of Pemberton’s army.
First Union attack on Vicksburg defeated
Second Union attack on Vicksburg defeated. After this second failure, Grant was able to settle down into a regular siege.
Union attack on Port Hudson, 240 miles south of Vicksburg. Repulsed with heavy losses
First week of June sees Lee’s invasion of Pennsylvania start up the Shenandoah Valley.
Defeat of a Confederate force being sent from Louisiana to help at Vicksburg. Most famous for the impressive performance of two recently formed units made up of Black soldiers.
Largest cavalry battle of the war. A confederate victory in which a large Union cavalry force, sent on to find General Lee, was repulsed after some initial success.
Confederate victory in a battle caused by the failure of a federal army to retreat in time.
Union attack on Port Hudson repulsed with heavy losses.
General Rosecrans begins a campaign in Tennessee that drives the Confederates back 80 miles in a week, leaving Knoxville and Chattanooga (a key rail junction) exposed to the Union.
Defeat of General Lee’s invasion of the North. The confederate army suffered severe casualties, and was never as effective again. Over a third of Lee’s army became casualties.
The garrison of 30,000 was released on parole, on the expectation that they would spread gloom around the Confederacy. General Grant was later to say that the surrender of Vicksburg was the decisive event of the war.
Port Hudson surrenders after news of surrender of Vicksburg reaches the garrison. The North now controls the Mississippi River.
A failed Union attack during the Charleston campaign. Its significance was the impressive performance of the 54th Massachusetts Regiment, the north’s elite black regiment. This battle changed the general view of Black soldiers in the north.
Rosecrans begins the Union campaign against Chattanooga.
Union forces under General Burnside enter Knoxville
Confederates evacuate Chattanooga. Confederate General Bragg withdraws to Georgia, where he is soon reinforced.
Battle just outside Little Rock during the Union conquest of Arkansas that saw the Confederate defenders of the city forced to retreat south.
Bragg attempts to defeat separate parts of Rosecran’s army but is let down by his subordinates.
The bloodiest battle of the western theatre. A Confederate victory, although not as decisive as it could have been, that resulted in the only Confederate siege of a city at Chattanooga.
President Lincoln forms a new Division of the Mississippi, to cover the area between the Mississippi and the Appalachian mountains, partly to improve the command structure at Chattanooga. General Grant is appointed to command the new division. A sizable new Union army is soon formed in the area, including 17,000 men under General Sherman.
Confederate army under General Hill attacked one Union force, just to find itself under attack by a second.
Accidental battle that marked the only Confederate attempt to break Grant's 'Cracker Line' feeding supplies into Chattanooga.
16 November 1863: Battle of Campbell's Station, Tennessee
Successful delaying action that allowed the Union forces under Burnside to get back inside the defences of Knoxville.
19 November 1863
Start of the Siege of Knoxville
The first battle of Grant’s attack on Chatanooga. The approaches to the Confederate positions on Missionary Ridge were captured.
First attack by Grant’s new army forces the Confederate forces off Lookout Mountain.
Second Union attack outside Chattanooga that included one of the few occasions in the war where a frontal attack against a fortified position succeeded. The battle breaks the siege of Chattanooga.
Failed Confederate assault on the Union positions at Knoxville.
4 December 1863
Longstreet abandons the Siege of Knoxville.
A minor Confederate victory that ended the serious fighting in the Knoxville campaign.