Scenic USA - Mississippi

Vicksburg National Military Park

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Battery DeGolyer - Vicksburg, Mississippi

Photos by Ben Prepelka
Scenic USA FAA Photography

   During the early stages of the Civil War, both sides realized the importance of the Mississippi waterway. Right in their own backyard, the Confederates erected fortification up and down the Mississippi, protecting strategic points along the way.
   One by one, southern fortifications fell to Union troops in early Civil War action. Vicksburg and Wisconsin Battlefield Memorial - Vicksburg National Military Park, Mississippi Port Hudson were the last of the Southern strongholds and proved to be the bloodiest assault on the mighty river. In October, 1862, Union General Ulysses S. Grant focused his attentions on Vicksburg and the Confederate troops under General John C. Pemberton. The fighting continued until May of the following year. Grant changed his tactics and began a formal siege of the city. The Union forces cut off all supplies and hammered Vicksburg from land batteries and gunboats on the river. On July 4, 1863, Penberton officially surrendered and five days later, Port Hudson fell. The entire Mississippi River was finally under Northern control.
   Vicksburg National Military Park commemorates the Civil War campaign and its significance as the key to the South's survival. Pictured here is the park's section of the entrenched Battery de Goyler, attended by Michigan's 8th Artillery Division and commanded by Captain de Golyer. The gun detachment crew for NPS puts on artillery demonstrations from time to time, showing how the gun troops worked under combat conditions.

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