The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963

rhe battle of Calcasie Pass
ALWYN BARR
C ALCASIEU PASS, IN SOUTHWESTERN LOUISIANA, follows a wan-
dering course of approximately eight miles to connect
Calcasieu Lake with the Gulf of Mexico. In appearance
it is a narrow inlet much like Sabine Pass some thirty miles to the
west, with low, flat coastal plains on both sides. Feeding Calcasieu
Lake from the north is the Calcasieu River which heads in north-
western Louisiana between the Sabine and the Red rivers. Pass,
lake, and river will forever be connected with the history of
Texas, for they served as the eastern boundary of the Neutral
Ground between the United States and Spanish Texas from 18o6
until 1821.2
The history of Texas again merged with that of the pass for a
few days in the spring of 1864. The area was an unlikely one in
which to conduct military operations, and activity at the pass
during the first three years of the Civil War had been limited to the
capture or destruction of a few blockade-runners, but the course
of events in 1864 culminated in the battle of Calcasieu Pass."
Late in April, 1864, Lieutenant Colonel William H. Griffin,
commander of the Confederate garrison at Sabine Pass, learned
that a Federal gunboat had shelled the abandoned fort at the
mouth of Calcasieu Pass and entered the estuary. Griffin imme-
diately assumed that the move foretold a flank attack on Sabine
Pass, where an earlier Union attempt to invade Texas had been
foiled in September, 1863. He sent word of the bombardment to
'Calcasieu Pass at present (1962) has been straightened to admit larger vessels
and may be crossed by ferry at the modern town of Cameron, Louisiana.
2J. Villasana Haggard, "The House of Barr and Davenport," Southwestern
Historical Quarterly, XLIX, 66-69; J. Villasana Haggard, "The Neutral Ground
Between Louisiana and Texas, 18o6-1821," Louisiana Historical Quarterly, XXVIII,
oo001-1129.
3Report of Lieutenant Commander Madigan, July 22, 1863, Oficial Records of
the Union and Confederate Navies in the War of the Rebellion (31 vols.; Wash-
ington, 1894-1920), Series I, Vol. XX, 406-407; report of Acting Master Lamson,
October 6, 1863, ibid., 612; report of Lieutenant Commander W. H. Dana, October
8, 1863, ibid., 615-

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 66, July 1962 - April, 1963. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101196/. Accessed September 18, 2014.