Released to collectors September 5, 2015, along with
First Day of Issue
Utilizing his engineering skills, General Pemberton fortifed the perimeter of Vicksburg with sophisticated trenches and formations, repulsing numerous attacks by General Grant. With time, vast amounts of munitions, and men at his disposal, the siege-assault executed by General Grant was slow and methodical, and still studied today by military leaders. In the end, Pemberton negotiated a surrender, and isn't remembered for saving the lives of his men and the civilians of Vicksburg, but rather, for losing Vicksburg.
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The Vicksburg Campaign was a series of maneuvers and battles in the Western Theater of the American Civil War directed against Vicksburg, Mississippi, a fortress city that dominated the last Confederate controlled section of the Mississippi River. The Union Army under Grant gained control of the river by capturing and defeating Pemberton’s forces stationed there. Grant initially planned a two pronged approach in which half of his army under General Sherman would advance to the Yazoo River and attempt to reach Vicksburg from the northeast, while Grant took the remainder of the army down the Mississippi Central Railroad. However, both of these initiatives failed. Vicksburg was strategically vital to the Confederates. As Jefferson Davis put it, “Vicksburg is the nail head that holds the South’s two halves together.” By the mid-nineteenth century, vessels of all descriptions moved agricultural produce along the Mississippi en route to world markets. It was the lifeblood of America. Upon the secession of the Southern state, and in particular Louisiana and Mississippi, the river was closed to navigation which threatened to strangle Northern commercial interests. President Abraham Lincoln termed the closure of the river as rebellion. Examining a map of the nation, Lincoln made a wide sweeping gesture with his hand then placed his finger on the map and said, “See what a lot of land these fellows hold, of which Vicksburg is the key. The war can never be brought to a close until that key is in our pocket.”
Read the article in its entirety in the July 2015 Bevil newsletter, which accompanies the cover.
First Day of Issue
May 23, 2013
Vicksburg, MS 39180