Ambrose E. Burnside takes command of the Federal Army of the Potomac and quickly develops a plan to move southeast down the Rappahannock River to the key Virginia town of Fredericksburg.
Nathaniel P. Banks receives orders assigning him to command the Federal Department of the Gulf, operating mostly in Louisiana and Texas. Banks would eventually succeed the controversial Benjamin F. Butler.
George B. McClellan formally turns the Army of the Potomac over to Ambrose E. Burnside and bids his troops a sad but fond farewell.
George B. McClellan receives orders finally removing him as commander of the Federal army that he had created.
Democrats make substantial gains in both the Federal and state elections, which reflects growing dissatisfaction with Abraham Lincoln’s war policies among northern voters.
Ulysses S. Grant starts moving toward the key town of Vicksburg, Mississippi, unaware that another Federal general was secretly planning to take the town with a different force.