October 3, 1861: Battle of Greenbrier River

Most of the skirmishes and battles of the Civil War were fairly indecisive affairs, and so it was with the battle of Greenbrier River fought on October 3, 1861 in Pocahontas County in what is now West Virginia.

In mid September 1861 the Confederates had established Camp Bartow in the area of Cheat Mountain under General Henry R. Jackson.  Union forces under General Joseph J. Reynolds (intriguing that the Confederate and Union commanders had surnames that would become famous in the War, but not due to them) attacked the camp on the morning of October 3, 1861.  Each side consisted of about six brigades.

The fighting went on for five hours from 8:00 AM to about 1:00 PM in a fairly desultory manner judging from the light casualties:  5 Union dead and 35 wounded, to 6 Confederate dead, 35 wounded and 13 missing.   The Union commander, concluding the attack was going nowhere, eventually retreated.  Both the Union and Confederate commanders reported that the other side had lost about 300 men, exaggeration of enemy losses, innocent or otherwise, being a constant habit of both sides during the War.  A completely inconclusive battle of no importance, except to the dead and wounded on both sides and their families. (more…)

Published in: on October 3, 2021 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on October 3, 1861: Battle of Greenbrier River  
Tags: , , ,