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"Valor on the Eastern Shore": typescript

Identifier: W-0151

Scope and Contents

The collection contains a typescript manuscript of B. L. Roberson's "Valor on the Eastern Shore: The Mobile Campaign of 1865," written in 1965 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Civil War. It examines the land campaign that lead to the capture of the city of Mobile, Alabama. The forty-four page manuscript documents the marches led by Union generals Edward Canby and Frederick Steele, which culminated in the Battle of Fort Blakeley (April 2-April 9, 1865) and culminated in the surrender of Mobile on April 12, 1865. The typescript contains minor handwritten edits made in pen. The manuscript was never published.


  • 1965


Conditions Governing Access


Biographical / Historical

The Battle of Fort Blakeley was the last major battle of the Civil War, resulting in the Union capture of the city of Mobile, Alabama. The battle, fought on April 9, 1865, was fought six hours after Confederate general Robert E. Lee surrendered his forces at Appomattox.

Mobile Bay, a major Confederate port, had been under Union blockade since the beginning of the war. While Union blockaders sought to halt the export of cotton and the import of military supplies into Confederate states, the Mobile blockade was largely ineffective for the first two years of the war. Protected by Fort Gaines and Fort Morgan, Mobile Bay was a central site for Confederate blockade runners. In August 1864, Admiral David Farragut captured Mobile Bay after a heated naval battle. The Union victory effectively halted Confederate blockade runs from the bay.

Although Mobile Bay was captured in August 1864, the city itself remained under Confederate control until April 1865. In April 1865, two columns of Union troops attacked major Confederate defensive posts at Spanish Fort and Fort Blakeley. The first column of Union forces, led by General Edward Canby, arrived near Spanish Fort on March 27, and staged a thirteen-day siege on the fort, ending with the capture of Spanish Fort on April 8, 1865. The second Union column, led by General Fredrick Steele, attacked Fort Blakeley on April 9, 1865. The fort's 4,000 Confederate defenders were overwhelmed by a Union contingent of 16,000 soldiers and surrendered the fort at approximately 5:30 on the evening of April 9. Shortly after the defeat, the remaining Confederate troops in Mobile withdrew.

Sources: Nicolson, Norman A. "The Mobile Campaign: Battle of Fort Blakely and Spanish Fort,"

Young, Matthew. "Blockade Running the the Civil War." Encyclopedia of Alabama


0.05 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



Typescript copy of B. L. Roberson's unpublished "Valor on the Eastern Shore."

Physical Location

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library, The University of Alabama


Gift of A. S. Williams III, 2010

Related Materials

The Mobile Public Library also holds a copy of "Valor on the Eastern Shore." See "Valor on the Eastern Shore," Local History Section, Mobile Public Library, Mobile, Alabama.


Title on box: A. S. Williams III Americana Collection - Civil War materials

Processed by

Haley Aaron, 2013



Guide to "Valor on the Eastern Shore": typescript
January 2014
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections Repository

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa AL 35487-0266