Key West, preserved for the Union by the actions of naval commanders, would play a key role in the Gulf, as it has throughout the history of the United States as a naval base, rendezvous and training center for operations east, west and south.
Welles instructed Farragut to "proceed up the Mississippi River and reduce the defenses which guard the approaches to New Orleans, when you will appear off that city and take possession of it under the guns of your squadron, and hoist the American flag therein, keeping possession until troops can be sent to you....
"There are other operations of minor importance which will commend themselves to your judgement and skill, but which must not be allowed to interfere with the great object in view -- the certain capture of the city of New Orleans."
New orleans Tantamount. --Old B-R'er