Fort Fisher

Fort Fisher
Fort Fisher, NE Bastion. Frank Vizetelly (National Geographic)

Sunday, February 12, 2017

February 11, 1862: Foote Underway to Fort Donelson

FEBRUARY 11TH, 1862:  Flag officer Foote, foreseeing the realities of the situation into which he was being pulled by the tide of events, wrote Secretary of the Navy Welles:  "I leave [Cairo] again to-night with the Louisville, Pittsburg, and St. Louis for the Cumberland River, to cooperate with the army in the attack on Fort Donelson....

"I shall do all in my power to render the gunboats effective in the fight, although they are not properly manned....  If we could wait ten days, and I had men, I would go with eight mortar boats and six armored boats and conquer."

Despite the serious difficulties they faced, Foote and his gunboat fleet made what General Grant was to term admiringly "a gallant attack."

--Old B-Runner

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