Galveston, TX
January 2009

Photos/text this page courtesy of William Bozic, Houston, TX
For any use of these photos contact

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Galveston Cemetery:


First Artillery Shot of Battle of Galveston
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge The manhole cover on 20th Street between The Strand and Harbor Side Streets in Galveston, Texas is the site of where Confederate General John Bankhead Magruder fired the first artillery shot in the Battle of Galveston Texas on January 1, 1863. After firing the ceremonial first shot, General Magruder retired to Ashton Villa in Galveston to conduct the battle. The Civil War-era Hendley building is in the background.

The photograph was taken during a tour of the battle sites given by Edward T. Cothham, Jr, author of the book BATTLE ON THE BAY: THE CIVIL WAR STRUGGLE FOR GALVESTON. The tour was conducted as a benefit for Hurricane Ike relief.



Hendley Building Shell Damage
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge The damage to the column was done by a shell fired from the USS Owasco during the Battle of Galveston, Texas on January 1, 1863. Confederates were posted inside and around the building firing at US Navy vessels.

Please note the other damage to the building is due to Hurricane IKE which flooded Galveston Island. Although obviously damaged, this pre-Civil War building withstood the storm fairly well. Photo taken at about 2:15pm.

Confederates successfully recaptured Galveston and held the city until the end of the war. Galveston returned to US control on June 19, 1865. Prior to that time it was an important port fro blockade runners.



E. B. Nichols & Co Building
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge Prominent Secessionist and Confederate financier, Ebenezer B. Nichols was Colonel of the 9th Texas Infantry (Nichols Regiment). He had "The Lone Star Rifles" ( future Co "L" 1st Texas Vol. Infantry Regt. Hood's Texas Brigade Army of Northern Virginia) train on the third floor prior to leaving Galveston for the war. For a short time this was Earl Van Dorn's HQ's. The building is located on The Strand in Galveston across from the Hendley Building.

When this photo was taken on January 10, 2009, this building was closed due to damage from Hurricane IKE.



CSA Signal Corps Building
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge This building on Post Office Street in Galveston is currently closed due to Hurricane IKE. It was used as an office for the Confederate Signal Corps. From the roof messages were sent by flags to and from various posts around the island and mainland. The post was out of range of Union vessels but actively reported their positions.

Photo taken from across Post Office Street and near the old 1890's Opera House.

CSA Signal Corps Building
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge

The historical sign shows a photo from more recent times, not 1858 when the structure was built. When this photo was taken the area was relatively clean and neat, but largely deserted. The building suffered damage from when it was partially submerged during Hurricane IKE, so it was not open to the public at the time.

CSA Signal Corps Building
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge From the roof of what was once a tall building in Galveston, members of the Confederate Signal Corps would watch the Federal blockade ships and send messages. (Remember Winfield Scott's Anaconda Plan that your history teacher made you remember for the test? Well, it was reality in Galveston)

Blockade Runners, on the other hand, were at the Hendley Building, not here. The CSA Signal Corps was concerned with protecting against invasion and sending military messages.



1857 US Custom House Interpretive Sign
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge
1857 US Custom House Interpretive Sign Other side
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge


US Custom House
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge This is the US Custom House in Galveston Texas. During Hurricane IKE water rose to the second floor. The building was used by both Federal and Confederate forces and was a post office for both sides. During the January 1, 1863 Battle of Galveston it was a staging area for troops. One of the eyewitness enlisted accounts was written by a Texas soldier in a holding position behind the building. The Federal Navy fired a number of shells at and around the important customs house. BTW, the columns are made of iron


US Custom House
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge View of Texas Civil War Monument in relation to the Custom House. The monument is similar in style to the monuments erected at other battlefields like Gettysburg PA, Shiloh TN, Mansfield LA, etc.


US Custom House
(January 10, 2009) Enlarge This is a view of the Texas Civil War Monument to commemorate the Battle of Galveston and role of the city during the Civil War. US Custom House can be seen to the right in the background.

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