Almanac History - January 1862

January 1st, 1862

Union troops fire on Confederate batteries at Pensacola, and the Port Royal area in South Carolina witnesses skirmishing as Federals continue their move to establish a permanent base at this important coastal location.

January 3rd, 1862

Jackson's troops begin their winter march, known as the Romney Campaign, intending to destroy the lines of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad and the dams along the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal.

January 5th, 1862

Operations around Hancock, Maryland continue unabated as Confederate troops try to rout the Federals who have retreated to this position.

January 6th, 1862

Sentiment begins to turn against McClellan as he appears to be reluctant to commit troops to any concerted action.

January 7th, 1862

The troops which have been positioned at Hancock, Maryland are now directed away from the vicinity of the Potomac, moving toward Romney, Virginia. Two Confederate cannon are seized at Blue's Gap where Colonel's Dunning's Northern troops rout the Confederates.

January 9th, 1862

Congress is absorbed by discussions of the slavery question, reviewing petitions that have been submitted which would curtail or terminate the institution.

January 10th, 1862

Romney, Virginia is taken over by Confederates who will camp there during the cold winter.

January 11th, 1862

After considerable difficulty with the War Department, Lincoln accepts the resignation of Simon Cameron as Secretary of War.

January 13th, 1862

Lincoln chooses Edwin Stanton to fill Cameron's vacated position as Secretary of War. Lincoln writes to both Buell and Halleck trying to spur them to action in the West.

January 15th, 1862

General Grant moves into the Kentucky-Tennessee area as gunboats on the Tennessee River move toward Fort Henry.

January 16th, 1862

General Zollicoffer's Confederate troops are positioned north of the Cumberland River despite General Crittenden's orders to the contrary. This will later prove unsatisfactory.

January 17th, 1862

General Charles Smith attacks the area around Fort Henry on the Tennessee River.

January 18th, 1862

Union troops begin to close in on Confederate troops at Mill Springs and Somerset on the Cumberland River in Kentucky. General Crittenden's troops should be partially protected by Zollicoffer's soldiers, but they are not because the latter not carefully positioned his men.

January 19th, 1862

Rebels are defeated at Mill Springs, Kentucky in a battle that claims 39 Union lives, wounds 207 and totals 15 Federals captured. The Southern forces register 125 killed, 309 wounded and 99 missing.

January 20th, 1862

Federals attempt to disrupt rebel blockade running by sinking stone-laden vessels in the harbor at Charleston.

January 22nd, 1862

The Port Royal force poses an important threat to Roanoke Island near Hatteras Inlet, South Carolina.

January 23rd, 1862

Martial law in St. Louis provides that pro-South property will be seized in the event that its owners refuse to support pro-Union fugitives.

January 27th, 1862

After months of delay and frustration, Lincoln issuesGeneral War Order Number One: "that the 22nd of February be the day for a general movement of the Land and Naval forces of the United States against the insurgent forces."

January 30th, 1862

A brief ceremony at Greenpoint, Long Island launches the ironcladMonitor.

January 31st, 1862

In a supplement to his Order Number One Lincoln hopes to press the Army of the Potomac to confront Confederates in Virginia as the Union troops are told to take possession of "a point upon the Railroad South Westward of what is known as Manassas Junction."