January 2015 Artifact of the Month


The Capture of Fort Fisher, North Carolina

Uniform jacket worn by Lieutenant Michael G. Glennan

According to Confederate Colonel William Lamb, by 1865 Fort Fisher, protecting the Port of Wilmington, was “the last gateway between the Confederate States and the outside world.”  An earlier attempt to capture the fort in 1864 had failed.  So on Sunday, January 15, 1865, a Union force of approximately 8,000 men attacked the fort again after a lengthy naval bombardment.  This time they captured it. 

Michael Glennan was described as a “cripple and exempt from service,” but he enlisted in the 2nd North Carolina Artillery anyway.  Promoted to quartermaster sergeant, Glennan held the rank of lieutenant while serving as aide-de-camp to Colonel William Lamb, commander at Fort Fisher.  Glennan surrendered with the garrison. 

The jacket is an altered enlisted man’s jacket made under contract with Peter Tait in Limerick Ireland.  The red collar and cuff facings were added after importation and the collar insignia, consisting of three gold braid concentric triangles, is not regulation and remains a mystery.  

Please also visit our Document of the Month page.

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