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Word Count: 533
The Mississippi River is one of the main rivers in north America and the second longest in the United States The Missouri river is longer The Mississippi flows almost 2500 miles from where it starts in Northwest Minnesota to its end in the Gulf of Mexico The Mississippi and its tributaries drain almost all the plains that lie between the Appalachian Mountains and the Rocky Mountains The center of the Confederate line in the West rested on two forts about 12 miles apart in western Tennessee They were Fort Henry and Fort Donelson If Union forces could capture the forts the Confederate position in Kentucky and western Tennessee would collapse Under Command of General Henry Halleck Gunboats Captured Fort Henry on February 6 1862 Ulysses S Grant attacked Fort Donelson The Confederate Commander Simon Buckner asked for the best terms of surrender and Grant replied No terms except an unconditional and immediate surrender can be accepted On February 16 1862 13000 men stationed at fort Donelson surrendered and Grant got the nickname Unconditional Surrender Halleck ordered Grant to join with Buell and move down the Tennessee River Grant and 40000 men moved to Pittsburg Landing Tennessee a village about 20 miles north of Corinth where Johnston was staying Johnston and his co-commander decided to strike Grant before Buell arrived Johnston planned to defeat Grant with his 44000 troops He attacked on April 6 1862 and the battle was over the next day On the first day the Confederate troops surprised Grant but he held his lines and Johnston was killed On the second day Grant received 25000 reinforcements and the Confederates only 700 Although Grant won he had 13000 casualties and the Confederates only had 11000 After the battle of Shiloh Halleck took command of Grants and Buells forces He moved southward and forced Beauregard to evacuate Corinth By early June the Union held the Mississippi River as far south
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