New Orleans during The Civil War was captured by the Union Army in 1862. Whether you are a history buff or a sightseeing tourist, this fact will have great importance as you tour the state of Louisiana and make your way to New Orleans. You will find memorials, museums and other reminders of the role Louisiana played in the outcome of the Civil War. New Orleans was the largest and richest city in the South when Louisiana seceded from the Union. It was the first major Southern city to be recaptured by Union troops.
New Orleans was occupied by the Union troops for three years, many of whom decided to make their homes there when the war ended. New Orleans became an attractive, vital place for them to live and make their living with the ports, abundance of fresh seafood and the lively neighborhoods.
In New Orleans history, the city was a strong Confederate city. In fact, New Orleans was the largest Confederate city in the Confederacy. In the midst of the Civil War New Orleans was a stronghold, adding thousands of troops to the fight. Its location along the Mississippi River made it an important city and a target for Union soldiers to capture. Once captured, New Orleans became less vital to the South as its ports were no longer available to her.
While touring New Orleans, there is much for you to see in terms of Civil War, New Orleans artifacts and New Orleans history. If you visit the New Orleans visitors web site or ask about tours of the area, you will get a feel for what artifacts and memorials you will be able to investigate. For example, you can visit the Army of Tennessee Memorial at Metairie Cemetery. It is listed on the National Register of Historical Places. A statue and tomb of General Pierre Gustave Toutant de Beauregard, an important Confederate officer, can be found there.
You can view the Confederate Memorial Hall at Louisiana’s oldest continually operating museum (under renovation since Katrina). It contains the second-largest collection of Confederate memorabilia in the world.. It is a repository for records, reports, artifacts, and memorabilia of the Civil War. The body of Jefferson Davis, the first Confederate President, lay in state at Memorial Hall on May 29, 1893, just two years after the Confederate Museum opened. President Davis died in New Orleans in 1889. He lay in state at the Memorial Hall for a day and a half while over 600,000 people came to pay their respects and view the body.
Also take a look at Chalmette Battlefield and National Cemetery which was the site of the 1815 Battle of New Orleans.