05/31, May 31st In Civil War History


Lt. Colonel
Mar 3, 2017
This date in Civil War history
Compiled by Mitchell Werksman and Jim Klag

May 31, 1861 - P. G. T. Beauregard ordered to assume command of the Alexandria Line, Virginia.

May 31, 1861 - Union troops, which were ordered by President Lincoln to evacuate their forts in the Indian Territory, arrive at Fort Leavenworth, KS. The route they followed is named after one of their guides, the honorable Mr. Jesse Chisholm.

May 31, 1861 - Brig. Gen. Nathaniel Lyon, USA, supersedes Brig. Gen. William Selby Harney in Missouri.

May 31, 1861 - Federal attack on the Aquia Creek Batteries, VA. (May 31-Jun 1)

May 31, 1862 - Silas Casey, U.S.A. is appointed Maj. Gen. Edwin Vose Sumner, U.S.A., is appointed Maj. Gen.

May 31, 1862 - Edward Richard Sprigg Canby, USA, is appointed Brig. Gen.

May 31, 1862 - Skirmish with Indians on the Eel River, near Van Dusen's Creek, CA.

May 31, 1862 - Skirmish at Tuscumbia Creek, MS.

May 31, 1862 - Maj. Gen. Thomas Carmichael Hindman, CSA, assumes the command of the Trans-Mississippi District.

May 31, 1862 - Skirmish on Salt River, near Florida, MO.

May 31, 1862 - Skirmish near Neosho, MO, with Rebel guerrillas, and Confederate aligned Cherokees under Stand Watie.

May 31, 1862 - Skirmish near Waynesville, MO.

May 31, 1862 - The Battle of Fair Oaks, or Seven Pines, VA, as Gen. Joseph Johnston, CSA, attacks the two isolated advanced Union corps across the rising Chickahominy River under Maj. Gens. Samuel P. Heintzelman and Erasmus Keyes, USA. Maj. Gen. Edwin V. Sumner, USA, moving across the Chickahominy River to deflect any further Confederate attacks, with Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, CSA, seriously wounded in the action taking place, being replaced the next day by Robert E. Lee, CSA, who breaks off the attack. (May 31-Jun 1)

May 31, 1862 - Brig. Gen. Robert Hopkins Hatton, C.S.A., is instantly killed during the intense fighting at the Battle of Fair Oaks, VA, in thick underbrush, only 8 days after receiving his commission as brigadier general.

May 31, 1862 - Skirmish near Front Royal, VA.

May 31, 1862 - Maj. Gen. Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson's CSA, retires from Winchester, VA.

May 31, 1863 - Affair on James Island, SC.

May 31, 1863 - Skirmish at Warrenton, VA.

May 31, 1863 - West Point, VA, is evacuated by the Union forces, removing to Federal positions at Yorktown, VA.

May 31, 1864 - June 12, 1864 - Battle of Cold Harbor - Robert E. Lee [CS] defeats General Ulysses S. Grant [US] and General George Meade [US]

May 31, 1864 - A small convention in Cleveland of Republican abolitionists unhappy with Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation and other things, nominates John C. Fremont for president.

May 31, 1864 - Richard Heron Anderson. C.S.A.. is appointed Lieut. Gen. Jubal Anderson Early. C.S.A.. is appointed Lieut. Gen.

May 31, 1864 - The following are appointed Confederate Brigadier Generals:
William Ruffin Cox, CSA
William Gaston Lewis, CSA
Robert Doak Lilley, CSA
John Caldwell Calhoun Sanders, CSA
James Barbour Terrill, CSA (killed the day before)
William Richard Terry, CSA
Thomas Fentress Toon, CSA
Zebulon York, CSA

May 31, 1864 - Federal expedition from Jacksonville and the capture on June 2nd of the Confederate Camp Milton, FL. (May 31-Jun 3)

May 31, 1865 - The following are appointed Union Brigadier Generals:
Henry Alanson Barnum, USA
Robert Francis Catterson, USA
William Thomas Clark, USA
Americus Vespucius Rice, USA
William Burnham Woods, USA

May 31, 1865 - Federal expedition from Barrancas aboard the transports, Peabody, N.P Banks, Clyde, Hussar, and Tampico, and with the steamer, Itasca, to Apalachicola, FL. (May 31-Jun 6)

May 31, 1876 - Appearing before a House committee, James Mulligan, a bookkeeper for the defunct railroad that Presidential contender James Blaine sold bonds for, reveals he has letters implicating Blaine in the scheme. Following the testimony, Blaine forces Mulligan to give him the letters.