Civil War 1861
In the spring of 1861, war was declared between the Northern and Southern states. Strategies were developed by both sides and the conflict began. In the development of those strategies one major issue, transportation, was evidently high on the list of priorities. By early 1862 General Grant had been moved to Pittsburg Landing, (Shiloh), Tennessee, to prepare his armies for an attack on the southern supply lines at Corinth, Mississippi. The North realized that they had to disable transportation of arms, supplies, and troops to the South early in the war. The earlier that they could do so the shorter period of time the South could survive. However, the Southern states also realized the importance of the railroads and attempted to stop General Grant cold in his tracks at Shiloh. The battle being lost by the Confederacy, they retreated to Corinth to protect the railroads because they knew that if they were lost the battle would be lost. Thousands of troops were killed in the Battle of Shiloh on both sides, but the Southern troops defeated, sickly, tired and hungry, returned to Corinth not only to recuperate but to fortify the area for the attack that they knew would shortly come. The sick and injured were brought in great numbers to the Tishomingo Hotel where both southerners and northerners lay side by side and received the same nursing skills. Some of the wounded were also treated at the Corona Women's College by a group of Nun's from New Orleans.
It was of the utmost importance that the Confederates protect the city. In the short period of one month, fourteen miles of earthworks were built to defend it. On May 29th, 1862, due to the overwhelming numbers, the deteriorated health, and morale of the Confederate army in Corinth, the decision was made to abandon the city. After so much was lost at Shiloh, it must have been a terribly depressing decision to give up the area, but seeing there was no way to establish a victory, the South retired. In retiring, nothing of much value was left for the Northern armies as Corinthian's loaded all belongings aboard massive numbers of trains and left the area devastated. The victory at Corinth was most certainly a great one for the North as it definitely reduced the South's and expanded the North's capabilities, thereby shortening the life of the war that was to follow.
One important note is that the Northern Troops remained in Corinth and never lost their prize possession. They finally left the City in January of 1864, after burning many of the properties that weren't previously destroyed. The 'Railroad City' was important enough to the Federals to leave a presence in charge for 2 years during the many other battles of the war! Return to Home