Dead Confederates, A Civil War Era Blog

Houston CWRT: “Blood on the Bayou,” December 8

Posted in Memory by Andy Hall on November 28, 2016


Blood on the Bayou:
Vicksburg, Port Hudson, and the Trans-Mississippi

by Dr. Donald S. Frazier
Thursday, December 8, 2016


51unvhj0egl-_sx331_bo1204203200_See what a lot of land these fellows hold, of which Vicksburg is the key!” wrote Abraham Lincoln. “The war can never be brought to a close until that key is in our pocket. We can take all the northern ports of the Confederacy, and they can defy us from Vicksburg.” Many Civil War historians assume that the physical occupation of the Confederacy was what Lincoln had in mind. However, by looking at operations on the west bank of the Mississippi, observers may see another picture emerge.

Vicksburg was a key, to be sure, but Port Hudson may have actually been more important. In addition, the occupation of Confederate territory may have been important, but the control of the Confederacy’s population — in particular its enslaved population — may have been even more critical. Dr. Don Frazier examines the role of the Trans-Mississippi in the great Mississippi Valley Campaign and takes a fresh look at the role the immense population of African-Americans in the region may have played in forming Union strategy.

Dr. Donald S. Frazier is professor of history at McMurry University in Abilene, Texas. A graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington and Texas Christian University, Frazier is also the award-winning author of four books on the Civil War including Blood and Treasure, Cottonclads!, Fire in the Cane Field, and Thunder Across the Swamp. He released his latest book, Blood on the Bayou, in spring, 2015. His other work includes serving as co-author of Frontier Texas, Historic Abilene, and The Texas You Expect, as well as general editor of The U.S. and Mexico at War and a collection of letters published as Love and War: The Civil War Letter and Medicinal Book of Augustus V. Ball. In addition to his teaching duties, Frazier has been very involved in work on Civil War and frontier heritage trails in Texas, New Mexico, and Louisiana, and work on historical projects in Europe and Mexico. He is the writer and director for the video Our Home, Our Rights: Texas and Texans in the Civil War, a winner of the Mitchell Wilder Award for Excellence in Publications and Media Design from the Texas Association of Museums. Dr. Frazier is an elected member of the prestigious Philosophical Society of Texas, the oldest learned organization in the state, a Fellow of the Texas State Historical Association, and a board member of the Texas Historical Foundation.


The Hess Club
5430 Westheimer Road at Westheimer Way
6 p.m. cash bar, 6:45 p.m., dinner, 7:30 program begins


Reservations required for both dinner ($30) and lecture only ($10)E-Mail Reservation is Preferred; Email Don Zuckero at, or call (281) 479-1232 by 6 p.m. Monday, December 5th, 2016.



5 Responses

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  1. Lyle Smith said, on December 9, 2016 at 12:39 pm

    I went to this event last night. First time going to a Civil War round table anywhere. Dr. Frazier’s discussion was informative and jolly. I only have his book “Blood and Treasure”, which I picked up at the Pecos National Historical Monument (about the Confederate New Mexico campaign). His knowledge of the civil war in western Louisiana is quite substantive based on his talk. The folks at the round table were friendly and solicitous. Black Confederates came up in the Q&A.

    • Andy Hall said, on December 9, 2016 at 2:46 pm

      Waaa. . . .Have I been ignoring you there?

      • Lyle Smith said, on December 10, 2016 at 11:54 am

        You were there? I was sitting in the back at the table with the books. I only showed up for the talk, although I got there in time for the quiz. I should have stood up, I knew all the answers (although I would have been guessing on Waul’s Legion, which is why I didn’t stand up).

        • Andy Hall said, on December 10, 2016 at 12:14 pm

          Yep, I was at the middle table on the left. I didn’t realize you were there, and I’m sorry I didn’t say anything. Sometimes I’m really oblivious that way — I think of people I interact with online as sort of separate from those I meet in person, and don’t always realize it when those cross over. I attend the Houston meetings most times. Hope you can come next month for Ed Bearss’ talk.

          • Lyle Smith said, on December 10, 2016 at 1:46 pm

            No worries Andy. You couldn’t have recognized me and I didn’t have a name tag. I totally missed you as well and probably only saw the back of your head. I thought you might would be there, but couldn’t pick you out from the crowd. Good talk though.

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