On This Day - 20th April Prev / Next

Saturday April 20 1861
  • The burning of the railroad bridges is ordered by the Mayor, to prevent the passage of Union troops through Baltimore, MD. (Apr 20-26)
  • Brig. Gen. Benjamin F. Butler, USA, with the 4th MA, arrives at Annapolis, MD, to support Fortress Monroe, VA.
  • The US Arsenal at Liberty, MO, is seized by state forces.
  • The Federal expedition to destroy the Gosport Naval Yard dry-dock at Norfolk, VA, is ordered by Commandant Charles S. McCauley, where several ships, including the USS Merrimac, and supplies are burned.
  • Lieut. Col. Robert E. Lee USA, resigns his federal position, deciding to side with his state of Virginia.
Sunday April 20 1862
  • Henry Prince, USA, is appointed Brig. Gen.
  • Men from the USS Itasca and the USS Pinola employ a night raid to remove some of the Confederate river obstructions below Forts Jackson and St. Philip, Mississippi River, near New Orleans, LA.
  • Maj. Gen. Irvin McDowell, USA, meets Abraham Lincoln near Fredericksburg, VA, on the Aquia Creek, and travels with the President to Washington, DC.
  • The Federal blockade on the Rappahannock River report capturing the following Confederate vessels: Eureka, Falcon, Lookout, Monterey, Reindeer, Roundout, Sarah Ann, Sea Flower, and the Sydney Jones.
Monday April 20 1863
  • Butte-a-la-Rose, LA, is captured by the Union fleet.
  • Opelousas and Washington, LA, are occupied by the Union army, under Maj. Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks, USA.
  • Skirmish at Bloomfield, MO.
  • Skirmish at Patterson, MO, with Brig. Gen. John S. Marmaduke, CSA.
  • Skirmish at Sandy Ridge, NC, with Maj. Gen. D. H. Hill, CSA.
  • Federal expedition from Murfreesborough to McMinnville, TN, including the destruction of the McMinnville to Manchester Railroad, etc. (Apr 20-30)
  • Federal expedition from Belle Plain to Port Conway and Port Royal, VA. (Apr 20-23)
  • Federal reconnaissance from Winchester toward Wardenville and Strasburg, VA, and skirmish, with loss of Life.
  • Brig. Gen. John Imboden's, CSA, Confederate expedition into West Virginia, including skirmishes:
    • at Beverly, (Ap 24)
    • at Janelew, (May 5)
    • near Summerville, WV. (May 12).
      (Apr 20-May 14)
Wednesday April 20 1864
  • Robert Frederick Hoke, C.S.A., is appointed Maj. Gen.
  • James Blair Steedman, U.S.A., is appointed Maj. Gen.
  • Skirmish near Camden, AR, the Camden (AR) Campaign.
  • The Confederate attack on Jacksonport, AR, is repelled.
  • Skirmishes about Natchitoches, LA, on the Red River, the Red River (LA) Campaign. (Apr 20-21)
  • Skirmish at Waterproof, LA.
  • The Confederate forces under Brig. Gen. Robert F. Hoke, CSA, surround and capture the Union garrison at Plymouth, NC.
  • Federal expedition from Fort Dalles, Oregon, and from Fort Walla Walla, Washington Territory, to Southeastern Oregon, with skirmishes with Indians, including the Snake Indians (Jun 18), the Federals destroying all their lodges, capturing all their horses, etc., the Cayuse Indians assisting the Yankees. (Apr 20-Oct 26)
  • Gen. P. G. T. Beauregard, CSA, is superseded by Maj. Gen. Samuel Jones, CSA, in the command of the Confederate Dept. of South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida.
Thursday April 20 1865
  • The Union troops under Brig. Gen. James H. Wilson, USA, occupy Macon, GA, as well as skirmishing at the following places:
    • at Montpelier Springs, AL
    • at Rocky Creek Bridge, AL
    • at Mimm's Mills, on the Tobesofkee Creek, GA
    • near Spring Hill, GA
  • Arkansas becomes the 19th state to ratify the 13th amendment, abolishing slavery.
  • Bvt. Brig. Gen. Guy V. Henry, 40th Massachusetts Infantry, assumes the command of the South Sub-District of the Plains.
  • Gen. Robert E. Lee, CSA, writes to President Jefferson Davis of his opposition to Davis' idea of transforming the struggle for Southern independence into guerrilla warfare.

On This Day information kindly provided by Martin Cross, 2nd U.S. Artillery, Bty B.