In 1853, the same year native Americans began a series of uprisings in Northern California, the U.S. Army established Fort Humbolt off of the northern California coastline in Eureka, California. After the Mexican American War Ulysses S. Grant was stationed at Fort Humbolt. However, Grant had meager funds at the time and was unable to transport his wife and his children with him to the northern California redwood coast.
General Grant drank excessively while stationed at Humboldt. When his superior caught him drinking, after ordering him not to do so, Grant was given the option to be court martialed or to resign from the U.S. Army. Ironically, Grant submitted his resignation to Jefferson Davis, the Secretary of War at the time, a few years before the Civil War began. Years after the fort closed in 1870, a statue of General Grant was erected at Fort Humbolt.
Now the former Fort is park of the California State Park system as Fort Humboldt State Historic Park.
The former hospital is the only original structure within Fort Humboldt.
On April 9, 1865, after the Battle of Appomattox Courthouse, Confederate General Robert Edward Lee set up letter correspondences between himself and General Grant. Both generals agreed to meet at the Appomattox Courthouse where General Robert Edward Lee surrendered to Union General Ulysses S. Grant. General Grant ordered that the soldiers of General Lee’s army could simply go home and that they would not be tried as traitors. When General Lee announced to his troops of the surrender, some objected stating that they could continue to fight in the mountains, but Lee countered stating that he would not mount gurella warfare.
The the site of Lee’s surrender has been designated by the U.S. Congress as the Appomattox Court House Park and is part of the U.S. National Park Service.
General Robert Edward Lee and Ulysses S. Grant were both graduates of West Point and were veterans of the Mexican-American War. Their mutual respect for one another led to a more lax set of surrender terms by General Grant.
The Battle of the Wilderness was the beginning of General Ulysses S. Grant’s Union Army offensive to overtake the Confederate Capital in Richmond, that began in Febuary 1964. The Battle of the Wilderness was the first time General Grant’s and General Lee’s armies combated one another during the U.S. Civil War.
While the Union army outnumbered the Confederate army, the advantage in numbers was undermined by the thick woods, that the troops encountered during the parts of the battle in the wilderness of Orange and Spotslyvania Counties, that made it difficult to advance forward in an orderly fashion.
Part of the Battle of the Wilderness occurred during a forest fire. Some soldiers returned to fight were the fire occurred to see skeletons of dead soldiers who had their bodies burned.