Amid a bombardment from hundreds of U.S. naval guns, the Confederate soldiers of Colonel William Lamb’s Fort Fisher garrison hunkered down in bombproofs on 15 January 1865. They had endured a similar barrage by the same powerful Union fleet less than a month earlier on Christmas Eve, but that was cold comfort on this gray January day. Suddenly, an odd sound was heard—a cacophony of steam whistles. It could mean only one thing: The Union land assault was coming.
Triumph of Civil War 'Jointness'
After ingloriously failing in their first attempt, the Union Navy and Army relied on teamwork to capture Fort Fisher, the Confederacy’s most powerful surviving strongpoint.
By Commander Michael A. Reed, U.S. Navy, with Commander John T. Kuehn, U.S. Navy (Retired)