Web Author's Notes:
Union General Nathaniel Banks had been operating in southern Louisiana since before Vicksburg had fallen, occupying New Orleans and attempting to attack Port Hudson and find ways to support the opening of the Mississippi River from the south while generals Grant and Sherman pushed the Confederates from the north. In April and May, 1863, Banks initiated what would later be termed the First Bayou Teche Campaign, moving a force west and north, along Bayou Teche, driving the Confederates out of the area and reducing their ability to harass Union troops then engaged in operations against Vicksburg and Port Hudson. Banks had some success on this operation, however, Confederate General Richard Taylor remained active in the area, even after the fall of Vicksburg and Port Hudson.
After the Union was successful in regaining complete control over the Mississippi River, Banks received orders from Lincoln to attempt to establish a presence in Texas, to the west, both to return that state to the Union but also to discourage any ideas of Emperor Maximilian and the French, then involved in a European war against the Mexican government, from attempting to take American land for France. Although other options for invading Texas existed, such as invading from the Gulf of Mexico, Banks decided to attempt invasion by a land route from the east and initiated the Second Bayou Teche Campaign, primarily beginning on October 3, 1863. This effort would prove unsuccessful, in fact, the 16th Ohio narrowly missed a heavy blow inflicted by Confederate General Richard Taylor on General Stephen Burbridge's rear guard, still stationed at Bayou Bourbeau (south of Opelousas) on November 3.
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|Descriptions, Articles and Various Accounts|
|Description #1 - Historical Dictionary of the Civil War - Excerpts
||Several excerpts from author Terry L. Jones' book, Historical Dictionary of the Civil War, provide much needed detail on the rather historically obscure campaign by Union General Nathaniel Banks to move into Texas and restore it to the Union.
|Description #2 - Excerpts from Letters
||Excerpts from letters of Pvt. Thomas B. Linn, Company B, written to his sisters back home, while camped at Berwick, Louisiana in November, 1863, provide a glimpse of the soldier's perspective on the reasons for the expedition from New Orleans, west and north along Bayou Teche and a sudden withdrawal.
|Map #1 - Military Map of Southern Louisiana
||This detailed but somewhat hard to read excerpt from a larger, military map, shows the entire area of south-central Louisiana where the Second Bayou Teche Campaign took place.
|Map #2 - Annotated Period Map of the Advance
||Period map with web author's annotations showing the advance of the 16th Ohio, along with Gen. Banks' troops, from Berwick to Opelousas, Louisiana.
|Map #3 - Annotated Period Map of the Withdrawal
||Period map with web author's annotations showing the withdrawal of the 16th Ohio, along with Gen. Banks' troops, from Opelousas back to Berwick and Brashear City (Morgan City), Louisiana.
|Photographs, Sketches and Images|
||View of steamboat passing down Bayou Teche near St. Martinville, Louisiana, giving us an idea of what the bayou and area may have looked like during the Second Bayou Teche Campaign.
||Modern day view of Bayou Teche near New Iberia, Louisiana, where the 16th Ohio performed garrison duty for several days.
||Images of the Union and Confederate officers commanding the forces during the Second Bayou Teche Campaign