Surrender of Clarksville

Surrender of Clarksville (HM1AT3)

Location: Clarksville, TN 37040 Montgomery County
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Country: United States of America
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N 36° 31.745', W 87° 21.849'

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Union Occupation

In the mid-afternoon of February 19, 1862, Flag Officer Andrew H. Foote, aboard his flagship, the timber-clad gunship USS Conestoga, passed Linwood Landing around the bend of the Cumberland River a mile and a half north of here. The ironclad USS Cairo and a steam tugboat accompanied him, just three days after Confederate forces surrendered Fort Donelson. Steaming upstream, the ships arrived at the bluffs, the location of Fort Defiance. Disembarked troops proceeded to occupy that fort and Fort Clark, the "river battery" located below the bluffs on the south bank of the Red River.

After securing the forts, Foote steamed to the Clarksville landing just below here. He had observed several white flags including one over Fort Defiance. Arriving at the town landing, the Federals saw smoke rising from the Memphis, Clarksville and Louisville Railroad bridge south of here, set afire by retreating Confederates.

Foote, on crutches from an ankle wound received at Fort Donelson, met with a group of citizens led by former postmaster general Cave Johnson, former county judge Thomas W. Wisdom, and Clarksville mayor George Smith. They asked Foote to ensure the safety of the townspeople and their property. Initially refusing to do so, Foote reconsidered and signed a proclamation the next day. Clarksville had surrendered; the war and occupation were at the front door.

The New York Herald reported the event on February 24, 1862. On March 4, the New York Times included a map of the area; a reporter aboard Conestoga wrote the accompanying story.

Flag Officer Andrew H. Foote - Courtesy Library of Congress
USS Conestoga - Courtesy Howard Winn
Cave Johnson - Courtesy Customs House Museum and Cultural Center, Clarksville, TN
New York Times, March 4, 1862, showing Clarksville and forts Courtesy Howard Winn
HM NumberHM1AT3
Series This marker is part of the Tennessee: Tennessee Civil War Trails series
Placed ByTennessee Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, September 8th, 2014 at 9:31pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16S E 467400 N 4042695
Decimal Degrees36.52908333, -87.36415000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 36° 31.745', W 87° 21.849'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds36° 31' 44.70" N, 87° 21' 50.94" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)615, 931
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 1051-1199 Clarksville Riverwalk, Clarksville TN 37040, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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