Genealogy Trails

Civil War
Events of 1861

[The New-York Times, Published: December 31, 1861; tr. by K.T.]


At this season -- the close of the year -- a resume of the principal events that have occurred during the past twelve months will be read with interest. No one can say that the record is dull or uninstructive. For the convenience of the readerwe have prepared two chronological tables -- one giving the history of the rebellion, and of the operations, on land, the other detailing more particularly the operations at sea. Both are convenient for future reference, and give, almost at a glance, a correct and concise account of the rise and progress of this great Southern rebellion -- of the efforts that have been made to suppress it -- and of the naval and military engagements that the war has engendered.


Dec. 20. -- Secession of South Carolina.
Dec. 24. -- Withdrawal of the South Carolina delegation from Congress.
Dec. 26. -- Evacuation of Fort Moultrie by Major ANDERSON.
Dec. 27. -- The Palmetto flag raised in Charleston -- Forts Pinckney and Moultrie occupied by State troops.
Dec. 29. -- Mr. FLOYD tenders his resignation as Secretary of War -- President BUCHANAN accepts it.
Dec. 30. -- Arsenals in South Carolina seized by State troops.
Dec. 31. -- Exciting session of the Senate -- Mr. BENJAMIN, of Louisiana, delivers a violent secession speech.


Jan. 1. -- First symptoms of life in the Buchanan Administration -- The frigate Brooklyn and another war-vessel ordered to Charleston.

Jan. 2. -- Fort Pulaski, at Savannah, taken by order of the Governor of Georgia.

Jan. 3. -- The President, having sent back the last communication of the South Carolina Commissioners unopened, they return to Charleston.

Jan. 4. -- National Fast -- The United States arsenal at Mobile taken by the local troops.

Jan. 5. -- South Carolina Convention adjourned -- The Star of the West leaves New-York with reinforcements for Fort Sumter.

Jan. 6. -- Gov. HICKS refuses to convene the Maryland Legislature.

Jan. 7. -- TOOMBS delivers a violent secession speech in the Senate -- Maj. ANDERSON's course in evacuating Fort Moultrie sustained by the House of Representatives.

Jan. 8. -- Resignation of Secretary THOMPSON -- North Carolina forts seized by the State Government.

Jan. 9. -- The Star of the West, endeavoring to enter Charleston Harbor, was fired upon from Morris Island and Fort Moultrie, and compelled to return -- The President sends a special message to Congress.

Jan. 10. -- Arsenals and forts of Louisiana seized by the State Government -- Secession of Mississippi -- Secession of Florida.

Jan. 11. -- Secession of Alabama -- Resignation of Secretary THOMAS -- Appointment of Gen. DIX as Secretary of the Treasury.

Jan. 12. -- Mr. SEWARD speaks in the Senate on the National troubles.

Jan. 13. -- Pensacola Navy-yard seized by Secessionists.

Jan. 15. -- Secession Meeting in New-York.

Jan. 17. -- Mr. HOLT nominated Secretary of War.

Jan. 18. -- Close of the Debate on the Crisis in the House of Representatives.

Jan. 19. -- Secession of Georgia.

Jan. 21. -- Withdrawal of the Alabama, Mississippi and Florida Delegations from Washington.

Jan. 22. -- Arms destined for Alabama seized in New-York.

Jan. 23. -- Second seizure of arms in New-York.

Jan. 25. -- Ex-Secretary FLOYD presented by the Grand Jury for malfeasance in office -- Secession of Louisiana.

Jan. 28. -- Withdrawal of the Georgia Delegation from Congress -- The Legislature of South Carolina resolve to demand the surrender of Sumter.

Jan. 29. -- President Buchanan again evinces an unsteadiness of purpose, and an indisposition to deal vigorously with the rebellion.

Feb. 1. -- Warlike preparations at Charleston -- Secession of Texas.

Feb. 2. -- The cutter Lewis Cass surrendered to the State of Alabama.

Feb. 4. -- Assembling of the Peace Convention at Washington -- Organization of the Southern Convention at Montgomery.

Feb. 5. -- Withdrawal of the Louisiana Delegation from Congress.

Feb. 6. -- Important speech in the Senate of Senator JOHNSON, of Tennessee.

Feb. 8. -- The Montgomery Convention adopt the Constitution of the United States for the Provisional Government of the "Confederate States of America."

Feb. 9. -- JEFFERSON DAVIS, of Mississippi, elected President, and A.H. STEPHENS, of Georgia, Vice-President of the Southern Confederacy, by a unanimous vote -- Arkansas arsenals seized by the State Government.
Feb. 11. -- Mr. LINCOLN, President elect, leaves Spring field, Ill., and commences his journey to Washington.

Feb. 12. -- The Confederate States Government takes charge of all questions pending between the Southern States and the United States Government.

Feb. 17. -- First speech of JEFFERSON DAVIS after his election.

Feb. 18. -- Inauguration of the President of the Confederate States at Montgomery -- Defeat of secession in Missouri.

Feb. 19. -- The President elect in New-York.

Feb. 21. -- The President elect in Philadelphia -- He learns of a plot to take his life.

Feb. 23. -- The President elect passes through Baltimore secretly, and arrives in Washington.

Feb. 25. -- Information received of the treason of Gen. TWIGGS in Texas, of the surrender of forts in Texas to the State Government, and also of a large body of United States troops -- The Peace Conference agree upon FRANKLIN's Territorial Proposition for a division of the Territory on the line of 36° 30'.

Feb. 28. -- President DAVIS vetoes the bill legalizing the African Slave-trade.

March. 2. -- Revenue cutter Dodge seized by the Texan authorities.

March. 4. -- Inauguration of President LINCOLN.

March 16. -- Adjournment of the Southern Congress.

March 18. -- Important Diplomatic appointments by President LINCOLN.

March 20. -- Secession of Arkansas.

March 21. -- A vessel with supplies for the United States fleet seized by rebels off Pensacola.

April 3. -- Great preparations commenced in the Northern Navy Yards.

April 4. -- Excitement at Charleston.

April 5. -- Preparations of BEAUREGARD to bombard Sumter.

April 9. -- JEFFERSON DAVIS makes a requisition for troops.

April 11. -- Demand made by BEAUREGARD for the unconditional surrender of Fort Sumter.

April 12. -- The Charleston batteries open on Sumter.

April 13. -- Surrender of Sumter.

April 15. -- The President issues his Proclamation for 75,000 volunteers. -- Tremendous excitement in the North.

April 16. -- The Confederate Government call for 32,000 more troops. -- Fort Pickens reinforced by Col. BROWN's command.

April 17. -- Gov. LETCHER, of Virginia, issues a Proclamation hostile to the National Government.

April 18. -- Arrival in New-York of the Sixth Massachusetts Regiment en route to Washington -- Fears begin to prevail for the safety of the capital.

April 19. -- The Massachusetts Sixth Regiment attacked in Baltimore by a mob and several of its members killed -- The Seventh New-York Regiment leave for Washington.

April 20. -- Immense Union demonstration in New-York -- Burning of the Gosport Navy-yard, including three ships of the line, three frigates, two sloops and a brig, mounting over 400 guns.

April 25. -- Virginia joins the Confederate States.

April 27. -- Twenty-one thousand National troops in Washington.

May 3. -- President issues a proclamation calling formore troops to serve for three years, and directing the increase of the Regular army and the enlistment of addition seamen.

May 13. -- Resumption of the interrupted communication with Washington via Baltimore -- Baltimore occupied by Federal troops -- Anti-Secession Convention in Western Virginia.

May 17. -- Union triumph in Kentucky. The Confederate Congress authorize the issue of $50,000,000 in bonds, payable in twenty years.

May 21. -- Seizure of telegrams by the Government.

May 22. -- The seat of the rebel Government transferred to Richmond.

May 24. -- Advance of the Union Army into Virginia. Assassination of Col. ELLSWORTH.

May 27. -- Occupation of Newport's News by Gen. BUTLER.

May 28. -- BANKS and FREMONT appointed Major-Generals.

May 31. -- Cavalry skirmish at Fairfax Court-House.

June 2. -- Union victory at Phillippa, Western Virginia.

June 3. -- BEAUREGARD arrives at Manassas Junction and takes command of the Confederate army. Border State Convention meet at Frankfort, Ky.

June 10. -- Affair at Big Bethel.

June 11. -- Skirmish at Romney, Western Virginia.

June 13. -- Evacuation of Harper's Ferry by the rebels.

June 17. -- Successful engagement with the rebels at Booneville, Mo.

June 28. -- Arrest of Marshal KANE in Baltimore.

July 1. -- Arrest of the Baltimore Board of Police Commissioners.

July 2. -- Successful engagement of Gen. PATTERSON's column near Martinsborgh.

July 4. -- Meeting of Congress.

July 5. -- Successful engagement at Brier Forks, Mo., between the troops under SIEGEL and the rebels under Gov. JACKSON and RAINS.

July 11. -- Defeat of PEGRAM by MCCLELLAN at Rich Mountain, Va. -- Surrender of the entire rebel force.

July 13. -- Engagement at Carrick's Ford. Defeat and death of the rebel Gen. GARNETT.

July 16. -- Advance of the army of the Potomac.

July 21. -- Battle of Bull Run.

July 25. -- Arrival of Gen. MCCLELLAN in Washington, to take command of the army of the Potomac. -- Gov. MORGAN, of New-York, calls for 25,000 more troops from the State.

July 27. -- Return of the Sixty-ninth and other New-York regiments from Washington.

July 28. -- The command under Gen. BANKS, at Harper's Ferry, is withdrawn to the Maryland side of the Potomac.

Aug. 6. -- Adjournment of Congress.

Aug. 7. -- Hampton burnt by the rebels.

Aug. 10. -- Battle of Wilson's Creek, near Springfield. Death of Gen. LYON.

Aug. 12. -- Arrest of Hon. C.J. FAULKNER, late United States Minister to France.

Aug. 16. -- Proclamation of the President declaring the States of Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee and Arkansas in insurrection.

Aug. 24. -- The transmission of secession journals through the mails prohibited.

Aug. 26. -- Skirmish at Summersville.

Aug. 28. -- Capture of the Hatteras Inlet forts by the expedition under Commodore STRINGHAM and Gen. BUTLER.

Aug. 30. -- Gen. FREMONT issues a proclamation confiscating the slaves of rebels.

Sept. 4. -- False reports of the death of JEFFERSON DAVIS gain circulation and credit.

Sept. 6. -- The Confederates advance into Kentucky. -- Gen. GRANT, with National troops, takes possession of Paducah, Kentucky.

Sept. 10. -- Defeat of FLOYD, near Gauley River.

Sept. 11. -- The Kentucky Legislature pass a resolution ordering rebel troops to leave the State -- The President, in a letter to Gen. FREMONT, directs him to modify the confiscation clause of his proclamation of Aug. 30.

Sept. 16. -- Wholesale arrest of members of the Maryland regiment.

Sept. 20. -- Surrender of Col. MULLIGAN, at Lexington.

Sept. 25. -- Occupation of Romney, Western Virginia, by National troops.

Sept. 28. -- Occupation of Munson's Hill by National troops.

Oct. 5. -- Unsuccessful effort of rebels to retake the Hatteras Inlet forts.

Oct. 7. -- Gen. FREMONT and his army leave Jefferson City in pursuit of PRICE.

Oct. 8. -- Attack of rebels on Santa Rosa Island, and repulse by regulars and WILSON's Zouaves.

Oct. 11. -- Naval collision between rebel gunboats and National vessels at the head of the Mississippi passes. Unsuccessful attempt of the steam ram "Turtle" to sink one of the National ships.

Oct. 16. -- Successful skirmish near Harper's Ferry. Capture of a rebel cannon by troops under Col. GEARY.

Oct. 20. -- Partial blockade of the Potomac by rebel batteries.

Oct. 21. -- Part of Gen. STONE's Division cross the Potomac at Ball's Bluff, and after severe fighting are driven back, with great loss, by the enemy. On this occasion Gen. BAKER fell.

-- Engagement near Frederickstown, Mo., and defeat of rebels under JEFF. THOMPSON.

Oct. 25. -- Gallant charge of the Frement Guard, under Maj. ZAGONYI, against a superior body of rebels at Springfield.

Oct. 26. -- Brilliant success of National troops under Gen. KELLEY at Romney.

Oct. 31. -- Retirement of Gen. SCOTT.

-- Gen. MCCLELLAN appointed Commander-in-Chief.

Nov. 2. -- Removal of Gen. FREMONT from command in the West.

Nov. 7. -- Engagement at Belmont, Mo. -- Bombardment and capture of the forts at Port Royal Entrance by United States squadron.

Nov. 8. -- Capture of the rebel Commissioners SLIDELL and MASON, on the British mail steamer Trent, by the United States war sloop San Jacinto.

Nov. 18. -- Message of JEFF. DAVIS to the rebel Congress.

Nov. 20. -- Disbanding of rebel troops in Accomac and Northampton Counties, Va. -- Return of the population to their allegiance.

Nov. 23. -- Bombardment of the rebel batteries by Fort Pickens and the ships-of-war Niagara and Richmond.

Dec. 2. -- Meeting of Congress.

Dec. 4. -- Occupation of Ship Island by National troops.

Dec. 6. -- Occupation of Beaufort, S.C., by the National troops.

Dec. 11. -- Great fire in Charleston -- Loss estimated at $7,000,000.

Dec. 12. -- Occupation of Tybee Island by National troops.

Dec. 13. -- Engagement at Alleghany Camp, Pocahontas County, Va.

Dec. 16. -- Threatened War between the United States and Great Britain.

Dec. 18. -- Large bodies of rebels dispersed by Gen. POPE in Missouri -- Capture of a rebel camp with 1,300 prisoners.

-- Gallant affair at Drainesville -- Retreat of the enemy.

Dec. 20. -- Sixteen old whalers sunk by the National forces at the mouth of Charleston Harbor.

Dec. 22. -- Skirmish near Fortress Munroe.

Dec. 25. -- Retreat of the rebel Gen. PRICE to Arkansas.

Dec. 28. -- Adjustment of the Mason-Slidell difficulty. -- Suspension of specie payments in New-York.

Dec. 30. -- Delivery of the rebel Commissioners, MASON and SLIDELL, to the British.

April 19. -- Presidential proclamation authorizing the blockade.

April 27. -- Supplementary proclamation announcing the blockade of North Carolina and Virginia ports.

May 4. -- The British ship Hiawatha, twice fired at by the Cumberland, escapes and gets into Norfolk.

May 6. -- The Monticello is blockading the mouth of the Elizabeth River, and the Quaker City is off the Virginia capes.

May 8. -- Shipment of arms via the Mississippi prohibited.

May 9. -- Blockade of Charleston by the Niagara.

May 11. -- Pensacola blockaded. The Pawnee. Monticello, Harriet Lane and Yankee are off Fortress Monroe.

May 18. -- Prizes arrive at Philadelphia. -- Savannah blockaded.

May 20. -- At this date six American flag-ships, with full rank Commodores attached, belong to the blockading squadron.

May 22. -- Complaints of the inefficiency of the blockade, particularly of Charleston. -- The Niagara captures the ship Gen. Parkhill off Charleston.

May 25. -- Blockade of the Mississippi established.

May 27. -- Mobile blockade.

May 28. -- Blockade of Pensacola considered thorough and effective.

-- The Brooklyn blockading off the mouths of the Mississippi.

June 1. -- At this date twelve ships, two barks, one brig and five schooners had been captured by the blockading squadron.

[The New-York Times, Published: December 31, 1861 - KT - Sub by FoFG]



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