Vicksburg: Day 16

2015-07-01 10.26.19A morning drive into town and down to the river allowed us to see the river boat docked for the day. It’s a regular visitor at Vicksburg as it makes its run from New Orleans to Memphis weekly.

2015-07-01 10.50.55Morning coffee was the first stop for my traveling partner and I poked my head into the Coca Cola Museum – the first place in the world to bottle Coca-Cola.  As I passed the morning conversation of the locals, I stopped to chat for a few minutes. And, then we moved on the the Military Park.

2015-07-01 12.54.13The battle and the siege of Vicksburg lasted six months and it was a decisive battle for the Union and for Gen. Grant, who afterwards was named the Commander of the Union Armies.  It takes almost six months to go through the hills and dales of the park and see all the sites and information there is to absorb.  What we thought would take us a full two hours, took us a full four hours and some more.

2015-07-01 13.09.14First, the terrain is high hills above the Mississippi River and and the dips and vales that accompany them.  Along the driving route there is a monument every 100 feet or so.  Many, many soldiers lost their lives here and the units they fought with have honored them.

2015-07-01 11.44.52One real joy was to find the names of two of my great, great uncles who fought for the Union in this place.  One of the brothers lost his life here, and we found his grave site.2015-07-01 14.21.06




We also learned about the Cairo, the first U.S. ship to be torpedoed. I had never heard this fact before.  The ship was excavated from the river in the ’60’s – 104 years from the date it was sunk.  And, it is being preserved and reconstructed today.2015-07-01 13.46.21

At the top of the hills, over the town, the whole vista shows the mighty river that was so much a part of this battle scene.  One would never know today that so many men fought here to preserve union and ensure freedom for all.  It is good to remember.  It is good to have places like this so we don’t forget.2015-07-01 14.39.48