What Happened in May 1864

Historical Events

  • May 1 -8] Battle at Alexandria, Louisiana (Red River Campaign)
  • May 1 Atlanta campaign, Georgia begins
  • May 3 3rd day in Battle at Alexandria Louisiana: Confederate assault
  • May 4 -16] actions at Drewry's Bluff, Virginia

Historic Event

May 4 General Ulysses S. Grant's Union Army at Potomac attacks Robert E. Lee's Confederates at Rappahannock River

  • May 5 Atlanta Campaign: 5 days fighting begins at Rocky Face Ridge
  • May 5 Battle between Confederate & Union ships at mouth of Roanoke
  • May 5 Battle of Wilderness, Virginia (Germanna Ford, Wilderness Tavern)
  • May 5 Campaign in Northern Georgia - Chattanooga to Atlanta
  • May 6 Battle of Port Walthall Junction, fought in Virginia begins (Battle of Port Walthall Junction), Union victory (US Civil War)

Battle of Interest

May 6 Battle of Wilderness, fought in Virginia, Confederate General James Longstreet seriously injured (Overland Campaign), inconclusive result (US Civil War)

Historic Event

May 6 US Civil War: Union Army General Sherman begins advance to Atlanta, Georgia, during the Atlanta Campaign

  • May 7 Battle of Wilderness ends (total losses: USA-17,666; CSA-7,500)
  • May 7 Skirmish at Port Walthall Junction, Virginia (Drewry's Bluff)
  • May 8 Actions at Stony Creek/Nottoway bridge, Virginia (Drewry's Bluff)
  • May 8 Atlanta Campaign: Severe fighting near Dalton
  • May 8 Battle of Spotsylvania Court House begins
  • May 9 -20] Skirmish at Ware Bottom Church, Virginia
  • May 9 Battle of Cloyd's Mt, & Swift Creek, Virginia (Drewery's Bluff, Fort Darling)
  • May 9 Ship battle at Helgoland, Austria-Denmark
  • May 10 Battles at Spotsylvania Court House, Virginia
  • May 10 Skirmish at Ny River, Virginia
  • May 11 Battle of Yellow Tavern, Virginia (Sheridan's Raid, South Anna Bridge)

Historic Event

May 11 Confederate General J.E.B. Stuart is mortally wounded at Yellow Tavern

  • May 12 Battle of Drewry's Bluff, fought in Chesterfield County, Virginia (Peninsula Campaign), Confederate victory (US Civil War)
  • May 12 Battle of Spotsylvania, fought near Courthouse, Virginia (Overland Campaign), inconclusive result (US Civil War)
  • May 12 Battle of Todd's Tavern, cavalry battle fought near Todds Tavern, Virginia (Sheridan's Raid), inconclusive result (US Civil War)
  • May 12 US Union colonel Emory Upton (24) promoted to brigadier general
  • May 13 -16] Atlanta Campaign: Battle of Resaca, Georgia
  • May 15 Battle of New Market, Virginia
  • May 15 Skirmish at Marksville (Avoyelles) (Red River Campaign)
  • May 16 Atlanta Campaign: Battle of Resaca, ends (since May 13)
  • May 16 Battle of Bermuda Hundred, Virginia
  • May 16 Last battles at Drewry's Bluff, Virginia (6,666 casualties)
  • May 17 Battle of Adairsville Georgia, Union forces Confederates to retreat
  • May 18 Battle of Yellow Bayou, Louisiana (Bayou de Glaize, Old Oaks)
  • May 19 Battle of Port Walthall Junction, Virginia (Bermuda Hundred)
  • May 19 Last engagement in series of battles known as Spotsylvania
  • May 19 Skirmish at Cassville, Georgia
  • May 20 Battle at Ware Bottom Church, Virginia, 1,400 killed or injured
  • May 20 Spotsylvania campaign in US Civil War ends after 10,920 killed or injured
  • May 21 General David Hunter takes command of Department of West Virginia
  • May 21 Russia declares an end to the Russian-Circassian War and many Circassians are forced into exile. The day is designated to be the Circassian Day of Mourning.
  • May 22 Battle of North Anna River, Virginia (Totopotamy River, Haw's Shop, Hanovertown)
  • May 23 Battle of North Anna, Virginia, 1st of 3 days of fighting
  • May 25 US Civil War: Battle of New Hope Church, Georgia: Major William T. Sherman's Union forces launch attack but suffers heavy losses and entrenchment on both sides [1]
  • May 26 -30] Skirmish along the Totopotomoy Creek, Virginia
  • May 26 Battle of Dallas, begins near Paulding County, Georgia (Atlanta Campaign), Union victory (US Civil War)
  • May 26 Territory of Montana formed
  • May 27 Skirmish at Salem Church (Haw's Shop), Virginia
  • May 29 Mexican Emperor Maximilian arrives at Vera Cruz
  • May 30 Battle of Bethesda Church [Totopotomoy Creek], cavalry battle fought in Hanover County, Virginia, inconclusive result (US Civil War)

Famous Birthdays

  • May 14 Eleanor Everest Freer, American composer, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (d. 1942)
  • May 18 Jan P. Veth, Bayern, Dutch painter, etcher, lithographer and art historian
  • May 19 Carl Akeley, American taxidermist and naturalist who developed the animal mount process and other techniques for museums, born in Clarendon, New York (d. 1926)
  • May 21 Princess Stephanie of Belgium (d. 1945)
  • May 27 Ante Trumbić, Croatian politician (23rd Mayor of Split), born in Split, Dalmatia, Austria-Hungary (d. 1938)

Famous Deaths

  • May 2 Giacomo Meyerbeer, German opera composer (Gott und die Natur - God and Nature), dies at 72
  • May 5 Alexander Hays, US Union-general-major, dies in battle at 44
  • May 5 John Marshall Jones, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies in battle at 43
  • May 5 Leroy Augustus Stafford, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies in battle at 42
  • May 6 Henry Livermore Abbott, US Union brigadier general, dies in battle
  • May 6 Micah Jenkins, Confederate brigadier general (friendly fire), dies at 28
  • May 8 James Samuel Wadsworth, American politician and major general (Union), dies in battle at 56
  • May 9 John Sedgwick, American Major General (Union Army), is shot in battle after claiming "they couldn't hit an elephant at this distance" at 50
  • May 9 Thomas D. Doubleday, American bookstore owner & Union Army officer, dies in an accident at 48
  • May 10 James Clay Rice, lawyer/Union brigadier general, dies in battle at 34
  • May 10 Thomas Greeley Stevenson, Union brigadier general, dies at about 27
  • May 12 Abner Monroe Perrin, Confederate brigadier general, dies in battle at 37

J.E.B. Stuart

May 12 J.E.B. Stuart [James Ewell Brown "Jeb" Stuart], Confederate General in the American Civil War, is killed in action at 31

  • May 13 Junius Daniel, Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies at 35
  • May 14 William N Green Jr, Union brigadier general, dies
  • May 16 Lean Bear, Cheyenne chief, murdered
  • May 18 James Byron Gordon, American Brigadier General (Confederate Army), dies at 41
  • May 20 John Clare, English poet (Poems Descriptive of Rural Life and Scenery), dies at 70
  • May 26 Charles Sealsfield, Austrian-American writer, dies at 71
  • May 28 Henry H Giesy, US Union-brigadier general, dies in battle
  • May 28 Simion Bărnuţiu, Romanian philosopher and liberal politician, dies at 55
  • May 30 James Barbour Terrill, US attorney/Confederate brigadier general, dies at 26