Report of Stonewall Jackson on the Battle of Cedar Mountain



On August 9, 1862, Stonewall Jackson, spearheading General Lee’s offensive against General John Pope’s hastily assembled Army of Virginia.  At Cedar Mountain in Culpepper County Virginia he attack his old Valley adversary General Nathaniel Banks, known affectionately by Confederates as Commissary Banks due to the fact that forces under his command usually were whipped and Confederates then feasted on the captured supplies of his defeated forces.  Banks commanded 8,000 men and Jackson had 16,000.  Banks and his men, surprisingly, put up a good fight and Jackson’s victory was hard fought.  Here is Jackson’s report which he submitted on April 4, 1863, paperwork tacking a back seat to all the fighting which occurred between Cedar Mountain and April 4, 1863: (more…)

Published in: on August 9, 2017 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on Report of Stonewall Jackson on the Battle of Cedar Mountain  
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April 8, 1864: Battle of Mansfield


The Union campaigning season of 1864 got off to a rocky start with the defeat of the Union army under Major General Nathaniel Banks at the battle of Mansfield in Northwestern Louisiana, bringing to an end Bank’s abortive Red River Campaign.

The Red River campaign, which began in mid-March 1864, had as its objective the capture of Shreveport, Louisiana, in northwestern Louisiana, the largest city still under the control of the Confederates in the Pelican state, and the capture of hundreds of thousands of bales of cotton on plantations along the Red River.  The bales of cotton were eagerly eyed by Union speculators and the entire campaign had an unsavory plundering feel to it.  In any case the campaign ended in disaster for the Union.

The Confederates were commanded by Major General Richard Taylor, the son of President Zachary Taylor.  Here is his account of the battle from his memoirs Destruction and Reconstruction: (more…)

Published in: on April 8, 2014 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on April 8, 1864: Battle of Mansfield  
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June 14, 1863: Attack at Port Hudson

Second_Winchester_Map Port Hudson

Fame is a fickle thing, and it often does not coincide with merit.  That certainly is the case of Confederate Major General Franklin Gardner, who commanded the garrison of Port Hudson on the Mississippi during a siege that lasted from May 22, 1863 to July 9, 1863.  Gardner conducted the defense with great skill against a Union army of 40,000, supported by a powerful fleet, against his garrison of 7500.  Gardner and his men inflicted 5,000 casualties against the Union force in exchange for 1,000 killed and wounded.  Another 5,000 Union troops perished from disease.  Gardner was helped in his defense by the military ineptitude of the Union commander, Major General Nathaniel P. Banks, one of the more useless of the Union political generals.  When Gardner surrendered it was after he heard of the fall of Vicksburg and realized that overwhelming Union force would be arrayed against him, in addition to the fact that his men were starving before his eyes. (more…)