Tuesday, May 27, 2014

April 21, 1864 (Friday): Elation in Richmond

CSS Albemarle (navy.history.mil)

PLYMOUTH, April 21, 1864.
General BRAGG,
Richmond, Va.:
I have stormed and carried this place, capturing 1 brigadier, 1,600 men, stroes, 25 pieces of artillery.

    R. F. HOKE,

PLYMOUTH, April 21, 1864.
His Excellency President DAVIS,
Richmond, Va.:
Heaven has crowned our efforts with success. General Hoke has captured this point with 1,600 prisoners, 25 pieces of artillery, and navy co-operation.

    Colonel and Aide-de-Camp.

ROCKY MOUNT, April 21, 1864.
President DAVIS:
Will be in Richmond to-morrow. The prisoners will number about 2,500, 300 or 400 African-Americans, 30 pieces of ordnance, complete garrison outfit, 100,000 pounds of meat, 1,000 barrels of flour, and other provisions. All stores are being shipped up the river to Weldon. Two gun-boats were sunk, 1 crippled, and 1 small steamer captured. Where will thue prisoners go? Our loss about 300 in all. Colonel Mercer killed.

    Colonel and Aide-de-Camp.

Richmond, April 21, 1864.
His Excellency Z. B. VANCE,
Governor of North Carolina, Raleigh:
SIR: I have the pleasure to congratulate you upon the recent brilliant affair at Plymouth, under the leadership of the young North Carolianian, Brigadier-General Hoke. May we have many more such to refer to hereafter as part of the history of the campaign of 1864.*
     I am, sir, with high regard, your obedient servant,


*Portion here omitted relates to prisoners of war.

Official Records, Series I., Vol. 52, Part 1, Page 870.

The Confederate victory at Plymouth prompted congratulations all around and praise for General Hoke.  It was a rare victory at this stage of the war, rarer still in that it was a combined Army-Navy attack, and a relatively quickly organized and executed attack complete in execution and success.  Although little noted by history, it was a clear setup to Union hopes of tying down Confederate forces with an expanded front south of Richmond. 

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