Thomas H. Handy and the Battle of Fort DeRussy

This week marked the 152nd anniversary of the Battle of Fort DeRussy, an engagement fought in Louisiana between elements of the Confederate "Army of the Southwest" and the federal Army of Tennessee. Fort DeRussy resulted in a victory for the Union, as 300 poorly equipped rebels were captured.

One of the Confederate officers taken prisoner was First Lieutenant Thomas H. Handy.

During the war, Handy was wounded in action, court-martialed and acquitted, thrown from a horse, and captured twice. Two months before the Battle of Fort DeRussy, Handy was decorated for gallantry when his "Crescent Light Artillery" battalion sunk the federal ironclad USS Indianola.

Four years after he was released and the war concluded, Handy purchased the Sazerac Coffee House in New Orleans, bottled and marketed the Sazerac cocktail, and laid the groundwork for the development of the Sazerac Company, owner of Buffalo Trace, producers of Thomas H. Handy rye whiskey.

Pictured above are a group of history buffs in Louisiana sipping on Thomas H. Handy rye whiskey at the 150th anniversary of the battle. You can read our review of 2015 Handy rye here. Cheers!