Canals, Cutoffs, and the Vicksburg Campaign

by Danny W. Harrelson, P.G., Research Geologist; Vicksburg, MS,,
Mansour Zakikhani, Ph.D., Research Civil Engineer; Vicksburg, MS,,
Amber L. Tillotson, Engineering Technician; Vicksburg, MS,,

Serial Information: Geo-Strata —Geo Institute of ASCE, 2016, Vol. 20, Issue 1, Pg. 28-32

Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: During the American Civil War, the term “Union” was used to refer to the United States of America, and specifically to the national government and the 20 free states and five border slave states that supported it. The Union was opposed by 11 southern states that formed the Confederate States of America, or the “Confederacy.” The Union’s overall strategy for dealing with the Confederacy at Vicksburg was developed by then General-in-Chief Winfield Scott. It emphasized the blockading of ports and an advance down the Mississippi River to divide the Confederacy in two. Because the blockade would take time to work, some people began to compare it to the coils of an anaconda slowly suffocating its victim. The snake image caught on, eventually giving rise to the popular “Anaconda Plan” name.

Subject Headings: Canals | Government | Light rail transit | Ports and harbors | Rivers and streams | Imaging techniques | United States | Mississippi River


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