March 17, 1864
On March 17, 1864, Lieutenant-General Ulysses S. Grant issued General Orders No. 12, taking command of the armies of the United States, as authorized by President Abraham Lincoln.
HEADQUARTERS OF THE ARMIES OF THE UNITED STATES, NASHVILLE, Tenn., March 17, 1864.
GENERAL ORDERS, No. 12. — In pursuance of the following order of the President:
EXECUTIVE MANSION, WASHINGTON, D.C., March 10, 1864. — Under the authority of the Act of Congress to appoint the grade of Lieutenant-General in the army, of February 29, 1864, Lieutenant-General ULYSSES S. GRANT, U.S.A., is appointed to the command of the armies of the United States.
(Signed) ABRAHAM LINCOLN.
— I assume command of the armies of the United States. Headquarters will be in the field, and, until further orders, will be with the Army of the Potomac. There will be an office headquarters in Washington, D.C., to which all official communications will be sent, except those from the army where the headquarters are at the date of their address.
(Signed,) U.S. GRANT,