The Siege of New Madrid

The Siege of New Madrid (HM1JT8)

Location: New Madrid, MO 63869 New Madrid County
Buy Missouri State flags at!
Country: United States of America
Buy United States of America flags at!

N 36° 35.37', W 89° 33.243'

  • 0 check ins
  • 0 favorites
In February 1862, Union Gen. John Pope, then stationed in central Missouri, was placed in command of the 20,000-man Army of the Mississippi and ordered to advance on Island #10 and New Madrid. On February 28th, Pope and his men left Commerce, MO and marched south along the Sikeston Ridge through swamps, lugging supplies and artillery, reaching the outskirts of New Madrid on March 3rd and laid siege to the city. For a successful advance, Pope had to cut off routes of supply. By capturing New Madrid, Pope could bring the river under his guns and prevent any enemy supply boats from reaching Island #10 from below.

The Confederates had incorrectly assumed that Pope would not be able to haul heavy and cumbersome siege guns along the miry roads to the Federal entrenchments, which faced the two Forts of Bankhead and Thompson and the Confederate gunboats that protected New Madrid's position. It required 10 days of herculean effort, but on the 12th, the Federals succeed in dragging the four 128-pound siege guns, three 24-pounders and an 8-inch howitzer on huge four-wheeled sling carts to New Madrid and they set about in earnest to shell the forts and the fleet of gunboats.

At dusk Colonel James Morgan's brigade of Paine's division advanced advanced to within eight hundred yards of Fort Thompson. Throughout the evening one regiment worked feverishly on the gun emplacements and trenches, while the other stood guard. The men piled fence rails lengthwise, lapping the ends over and covering them with dirt.

By 3 am the Federals had completed two redoubts with flanking rifle trenches for two regiments. Captain Joseph A. Mower, with two companies of the of the 1st US Infantry, manned the siege guns. The 10th and 16th Illinois were assigned to the trenches, supported by Bissell's engineers. Seven companies of the 2nd and 3rd Michigan Cavalry anchored the far right, beyond the breastworks. The 51st Illinois was positioned on the extreme left flank along the wooded slough that stretched from the river. Slack's brigade moved into a cornfield to the left of Cumming's regiment. Stanley's Ohio division, backed by a dozen field guns, moved in the rear of the main line of battle along the road. More than ten thousand men were deployed to support the siege batteries, with Hamilton's division and Palmer's brigade in reserve.

At dawn on March 13th, a deafening roar jolted the Confederates, followed by a thunderous cheer throughout the Union army. The Confederates were taken completely by surprise.

Unable to hold New Madrid against siege guns, the Confederate commanders ordered the evacuation of the gunboat and their positions at Forts Bankhead and Thompson during the night in the middle of a rainstorm with much confusion. The next morning the Federals quickly occupied New Madrid and entered the deserted forts.
HM NumberHM1JT8
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Sunday, March 29th, 2015 at 9:03pm PDT -07:00
Sorry, but we don't have a picture of this historical marker yet. If you have a picture, please share it with us. It's simple to do. 1) Become a member. 2) Adopt this historical marker listing. 3) Upload the picture.
Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16S E 271512 N 4052372
Decimal Degrees36.58950000, -89.55405000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 36° 35.37', W 89° 33.243'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds36° 35' 22.2" N, 89° 33' 14.58" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)573
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling North
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 473-483 Blomfield Rd, New Madrid MO 63869, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

Is this marker missing? Are the coordinates wrong? Do you have additional information that you would like to share with us? If so, check in.

Nearby Markersshow on map
Check Ins  check in   |    all

Have you seen this marker? If so, check in and tell us about it.

Comments 0 comments

Maintenance Issues
  1. Is this marker part of a series?
  2. What historical period does the marker represent?
  3. What historical place does the marker represent?
  4. What type of marker is it?
  5. What class is the marker?
  6. What style is the marker?
  7. Does the marker have a number?
  8. What year was the marker erected?
  9. Who or what organization placed the marker?
  10. This marker needs at least one picture.
  11. Can this marker be seen from the road?
  12. Is the marker in the median?