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On This Day… Unconditional Surrender!

Written by: George Chittenden : 02 Jul 2019

It was on this day, 16th February, back in 1862 when General Ulysses Grant secured one of the first major victories of the American Civil War, with the capture of Fort Donelson. Just ten days earlier, thousands of Confederate troops were sent to reinforce the fort, and the battle began on Feb 13th.

On the 16th Confederate troops attempted to break through the Union lines but failed and surrendered the fort. When the Confederate troops enquired about terms of surrender, Grant informed them that no terms except unconditional and immediate surrender would be acceptable, earning Grant the nickname “Unconditional Surrender.”

President Lincoln promoted Grant to Major General after the battle. His victory had ensured that Kentucky would remain in the Union and helped expose Tennessee to future Union advances.

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