Featured Character – 1860
Pierre Gustave Toutant-Beauregard was born on May 28, 1818 near New Orleans, Louisiana. As a young man, he graduated second in his class at West Point in 1838 and became an engineer in the military. He was sent to the war in Mexico to construct defenses years later in 1846-1847, where he was promoted twice to major. Upon his return to the United States, Beauregard resumed his engineering of fortifications around New Orleans until the war broke out. Beauregard immediately signed up for service in the Confederate army and led the firing on Fort Sumter on April 12th and was victorious at the Battle of Bull Run on July 21, 1861. However, when Beauregard was ordered to Tennessee during the spring of 1862, his army was unable to match the great strength in numbers of the army under General Grant; thus Beauregard was forced to fall back to Mississippi. He left on sick leave to return a general in September 1862, assigned the task of defending Charleston against siege, which he did successfully for a year and a half. In May 1864, Beauregard’s troops assisted General Robet E. Lee’s in Richmond; in October he was made commander and sent to Georgia to resist William T. Sherman’s forces. However, Sherman’s forces overpowered the Confederates, and, with General Joseph E. Johnston and his forces in North Carolina, General Beauregard was forced to surrender to General Sherman in April 1865. After the war, Beauregard went on to become Commissioner of Public Works in New Orleans; president of New Orleans, Jackson, and Mississippi railroad; and adjutant-general of Louisiana before he died in New Orleans on February 20, 1893.