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The Picket Skirmish of Friday, April 4th 1862 has been discussed “in passing” on the way to the more interesting and important Battle of Shiloh (which erupted Sunday morning, April 6th.) In many ways, this Picket Skirmish was a “dry run” for the Big Show on Sunday. We at SDG believe we are familiar with this skirmish, but are we? Here are a series of questions: What was the weather on 4 April 1862? What Federal forces were involved that Friday (actually engaged?) What Confederate forces were involved (actually engaged or fired rounds?) At what time on Friday did the first exchange of gunfire occur (to nearest half hour)? Who was the most senior Federal leader involved? Who was the most senior Federal leader to survey the ground on Friday? Who was the most senior Confederate leader involved (either at scene of action, or directing that action from the rear)? At what time did the “engagement” end (to nearest half hour)? At what time did Major General Grant meet with BGen W.T. Sherman on Friday? What action did Major General Grant order as result of the Picket Skirmish? How many total casualties resulted (USA and CSA)? Which of the Confederate prisoners taken on April 4th were interviewed by Grant? What happened to these “ten” Confederate prisoners? [Grant records 8 prisoners.] How many Federal prisoners were taken on April 4th? What happened to them? Can you answer them all?
A number of Historians have attempted, over the years, to define the Civil War partnership of U.S. Grant and William Tecumseh Sherman; and identify "what it was that made that partnership successful." General Oliver O. Howard, USMA Class of 1854, came to know the two leaders after he was transferred to the West following his participation at Gettysburg; he first made their acquaintance during the Campaign for Chattanooga in October 1863. This is General Howard's observation: References: http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Gazetteer/Places/America/United_States/Army/USMA/Cullums_Register/1634*.html General O.O. Howard bio https://archive.org/details/autobiographyofo01inhowa/page/n7 Autobiography of General Oliver O. Howard (pages 474 - 475).