2019 – Sightseeing Vicksburg, MS

At the Ironclad Cairo in Vicksburg, MS

Vicksburg is a historic town right on the Mississippi River. The Welcome Center has a large veranda with a wonderful view of the River and the bridges that cross it. There is a lovely room staged inside representative of the many historic homes of the area. Nearby is is an overlook called the Navy Circle with markers explaining its importance to the Battle of Vicksburg.

We also visited the Vicksburg National Military Park which commemorates the many soldiers from both sides who fought for control of Vicksburg and control of the Mississippi River. The Battle for Vicksburg lasted more than six months and cost over 48,000 casualties. As we drove through the park I was amazed at the many markers and commemorative statues honoring those involved in the siege.

Also in the park we visited the USS Cairo and the museum. The Cairo is one of seven ironclad gunboats built by the Union army. This is an amazing partial restoration with many of the original timbers still intact. I was surprised that some of the metal on the front was railroad ties placed horizontally for protection. The Cairo was leading a flotilla tasked with destroying Confederate Batteries and underwater mines. She was hit with two explosions and sank within twelve minutes with no loss of life. Inside the museum are many personal artifacts along with other equipment recovered with the ship and are now on display for all to see.


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