This Week in the Civil War - 783
Ulysses Grant, the newly appointed lieutenant general in charge of all Union armies, became a supporter of the Anaconda Plan, first advocated by General Winfield Scott in early 1861. The Anaconda Plan involved striking the South simultaneously in several different areas, applying slow but steady pressure on the region, just as an Anaconda snake would do while attacking.
Grant determined to set the various Union armies in motion against the South, believing that the superior manpower of the North applied against the vast, indefensible areas of the South would ultimately “squeeze” and deprive the Confederacy of life, just as an attacking Anaconda would do to its prey. For himself, Grant reserved direct control of the Union Army of the Potomac which would confront Robert E. Lee, the South’s most successful commander.