Troop engagements of the American Civil War, 1861

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The following is a list of engagements that took place in 1861 during the American Civil War.

History[edit]

The war started on April 12 when Confederate forces commanded by General P. G. T. Beauregard opened fire on the Union garrison of Fort Sumter in the harbor of Charleston, South Carolina; after a thirty-four hour bombardment, the Union garrison surrendered. There had been no casualties during the bombardment; but the following day while the Union garrison commander, Major Robert Anderson, was firing a fifty-gun salute, there was an explosion that resulted in one man being killed and five wounded.[1] United States president Abraham Lincoln issued a proclamation calling for the states to raise 75,000 volunteers for ninety days to suppress the South; in response to the proclamation, an additional four states (Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee, and North Carolina) seceded and joined the Confederacy, pledging troops to the volunteer forces it was raising.[2]

19th century chromolitograph of the First Battle of Bull Run
First Battle of Bull Run, chromolitograph by Kurz & Allison

In the Eastern Theater, there were two major campaigns in Virginia. The first, the Western Virginia Campaign, started in May. Union forces commanded by Major General George B. McClellan invaded western Virginia and drove the Confederate forces from the area following a series of small skirmishes. Although these fights involved only a few hundred men on either side, the newspaper coverage of the campaign turned McClellan into a national hero. After McClellan was transferred to command the Army of the Potomac, Confederate General Robert E. Lee was assigned to drive the Union forces out of the state but failed to do so at Cheat Mountain and in the Kanawha Valley; Lee was subsequently transferred to other duties in November.[3] The other major campaign ended with the First Battle of Bull Run on July 17, when Union forces commanded by Major General Irvin McDowell attacked the Confederate Army of the Potomac, commanded by Brigadier General P.G.T. Beauregard; although initially successful, Confederate reinforcements from the Shenandoah Valley routed McDowell and forced him back to Washington, D.C.[4] McDowell was replaced by McClellan, who renamed his force the Army of the Potomac and spent the rest of the year training his men and stockpiling supplies, despite pressure from the Union government to launch an offensive as soon as possible. There were several minor skirmishes in Virginia during the remainder of the year, the most significant being the Battle of Ball's Bluff, due to the death of Colonel Edward Baker, a senator from Oregon. Outrage in Congress over his death led to the creation of the Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War, which was used by the Radical Republicans in Congress in an attempt to prosecute the war according to their views.[5]

In the Western Theater, there were several skirmishes in the border state of Kentucky but no major battles. Kentucky, with divided sympathies, attempted to declare itself neutral; however, Confederate Major General Leonidas Polk sent a force to occupy Columbus, Kentucky, saying it was necessary for the defense of the Mississippi River. The Kentucky legislature then requested Union help in driving the Confederates out of the state, at which point both armies set up defensive positions all through the state. The governor and most of the legislature were Unionists, but a pro-Confederate state government, with some members of the legislature, was organized in Russellville; both armies then began recruiting efforts.[6] Along the Atlantic seacoast and Gulf coast, Union forces captured several coastal areas for use as naval ports for the Union blockade, including Port Royal, South Carolina and the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Lincoln declared on April 19 a blockade of the Confederate coastline and ports; this required the Union navy to build hundreds of ships to enforce the blockade, growing from forty-two ships in April to a total of 264 ships at the end of the year.[7]

19th century lithograph of the Battle of Wilson's Creek
Battle of Wilson's Creek by Kurz and Allison

In the Trans-Mississippi Theater, most of the fighting took place in Missouri between the pro-secessionist Missouri State Guard, commanded by Major General Sterling Price, and the Union Department of the West. Union forces under the command of Brigadier General Nathaniel Lyon drove the Missouri State Guard and the pro-secessionist portion of the state government into the southwestern part of the state, where it united with the Confederate Western Army commanded by Brigadier General Benjamin McCulloch. There, on August 10 in the Battle of Wilson's Creek, Lyon attacked the combined forces of Price and McCulloch and was defeated, with Lyon being killed during the battle. McCulloch returned to Arkansas, while Price moved north, attempting to recapture the state from Union forces.[8] Another Confederate offensive took place in the New Mexico Territory, where a Confederate cavalry battalion moved into the southwestern part of the territory and captured Fort Filmore, forcing the surrender of the Union garrison. A secessionist convention in Mesilla declared the southern portion of the territory to be the Confederate Territory of Arizona and raised several militia companies, which fought several skirmishes with both the Union forces remaining in the territory and the Apache tribes.[9]

Engagements[edit]

Date Engagement Military units Losses
April 12–14 Fort Sumter, South Carolina Confederate artillery, Union garrison of Fort Sumter None
April 15 Evacuation of Fort Sumter, South Carolina Union garrison of Fort Sumter Union One soldier was killed and five others wounded by a premature explosion of a cannon in firing a salute to the United States flag.[10]
April 19 Riots in Baltimore, Maryland Union 6th Massachusetts Infantry, 26th Pennsylvania Infantry, pro-secessionist crowd Union 34; civilians 4 killed, unknown wounded[11]
May 10 Camp Jackson, located just west of St. Louis, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Missouri State Guard 639 (all prisoners), Union none[12]
May 10 Riots in St. Louis, Missouri Union forces and pro-secessionist crowd Union 4 killed, prisoners 3 killed, civilians 28 killed (unknown wounded)[13]
May 18–19 Sewell's Point, Virginia Confederate artillery, Union naval squadron 10 total[14]
May 29 – June 1 Aquia Creek, Virginia Confederate artillery, Union naval squadron 10 total[15]
June 1 Fairfax Court House, Virginia detachments from Confederate Army of the Potomac and Union Department of Northeastern Virginia Confederate 1 killed, 2 wounded, 5 captured, Union 1 killed, 4 wounded, 3 captured[16][17]
June 1 Arlington Mills, Virginia small Confederate infantry squad; two Union infantry companies Confederate 1 wounded; Union 1 killed, 1 wounded[18]
June 3 Philippi, West Virginia Confederate infantry, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 6, Union 5[19]
June 10 Big Bethel, Virginia Confederate and Union infantry Confederate 8, Union 76[20]
June 13 Corrick's Ford, West Virginia Confederate Infantry, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 620, Union 10–53[21]
June 15 Hooe's Ferry (near Mathias Point), Virginia Confederate Farmer's Fork Grays, Union schooner Christina Keen none (Christina Keen captured and burned)[22]
June 17 Vienna, Virginia Detachments from Confederate Army of the Potomac and Union Department of Northeastern Virginia Confederate none reported, Union 8 killed, 4 wounded[23][24]
June 17 Boonville, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union Western Department Missouri State Guard 70, Union 12[25]
June 18 Camp Cole, Missouri Missouri State Guards, Union Missouri Home Guards. Missouri State Guard 32, Union 125[26]
June 27 Matthias' Point, Virginia Confederate garrison, Union gunboats Pawnee and Freeborn. Confederate none, Union 5[27]
July 2 Hoke's Run, West Virginia Confederate Army of the Shenandoah, Union Army of the Shenandoah Confederate 25, Union 73[28]
July 5 Carthage, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Missouri State Guard 74, Union 44[29]
July 5 Neosho, Missouri Confederate cavalry, Union detachment of 3rd Missouri Infantry Confederate none, Union 137 (captured)[30]
July 8 Laurel Hill or Bealington, West Virginia Confederate Army of the Northwest, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate unknown, Union 8[31]
July 11 Rich Mountain, West Virginia Confederate infantry, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 88, Union 74[32]
July 12 Barboursville or Red House, Virginia Confederate infantry, Union Department of the Ohio unknown[33]
July 12 Beverly, West Virginia Confederate Army of the Northwest, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 553 (prisoners), Union none[34]
July 14 Corrick's Ford, West Virginia Confederate infantry, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 620, Union 10–53[35]
July 17 Scarrytown, West Virginia Confederate Army of the Kanawha, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate unknown, Union 47[36]
July 17 Bunker Hill, Virginia Confederate Army of the Shenandoah, Union Army of the Shenandoah unknown[37]
July 18 Blackburn's Ford, Virginia Confederate Army of the Potomac, Union Department of Northeast Virginia Confederate 70, Union 83[38]
July 21 Manassas, Virginia Confederate Army of the Potomac and Army of the Shenandoah, Union Department of Northeast Virginia Confederate 1,897, Union 2,708[39]
July 22 Forsyth, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Missouri State Guard 15, Union 3[40]
July 26 Mesilla, New Mexico Territory Confederate battalion from 2nd Texas Mounted Rifles, Union Southern Military District, Department of New Mexico Confederate none, Union 9[41]
July 27 Fort Fillmore, New Mexico Confederate battalion from 2nd Texas Mounted Rifles, Union Southern Military District, Department of New Mexico Confederate none, Union 500 (surrendered)[42]
August 2 Dug Springs, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Missouri State Guard 6, Union 10[43]
August 3 Curran Post Office, Missouri Confederate Western Army, Union Department of the West unknown[44]
August 5 Athens, Missouri Confederate Missouri State Guard, Union Home Guards and 21st Missouri Infantry Confederate 28, Union 11[45]
August 7 Hampton, Virginia Confederate cavalry, Union 20th New York. Confederate 9, Union unknown[46]
August 8 Lovettsville, Virginia Confederate and Union forces Confederate 6, Union unknown[47]
August 10 Wilson's Creek, Missouri Missouri State Guard and Confederate Department No. 2, Union Department of the West Confederate 464, Missouri State Guard 758, Union 1,317[48]
August 10 Potosi, Missouri Confederate cavalry, Union Missouri Home Guards. Confederate 5, Union 5[49]
August 17 Palmyra, Missouri Confederate and Union forces unknown[50]
August 25 Mason's Hill, Virginia detachments from Confederate Army of the Potomac and Union Department of the Potomac unknown[51]
August 26 Kessler's Cross Lanes, West Virginia Confederate infantry, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 40, Union 132[52]
August 28–29 Hatteras Inlet, North Carolina Confederate garrison of Fort Hatteras and Fort Clark, Union North Carolina Expedition Confederate 670, Union 3[53]
August 29 Lexington, Missouri Confederate cavalry, Union Missouri Home Guards. unknown[54]
August 31 Munson's Hill, Virginia Confederate detachment, Department of Northern Virginia, Union detachment, Army of the Potomac. Confederate unknown, Union 5[55]
September 2 Dry Wood Creek, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Missouri State Guard unknown, Union 14[56]
September 3 Bailey's Cross Roads, Virginia detachments of Confederate Army of the Potomac and Union Department of the Potomac Confederate none, Union 8[57]
September 10 Carnifax Ferry, West Virginia Confederate infantry, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 32, Union 158[58]
September 11 Lewinsville, Virginia detachments of Confederate Army of the Potomac and Union Department of the Potomac Confederate none, Union 18[59]
September 12–15 Cheat Mountain, West Virginia Confederate infantry, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 100, Union 71[60]
September 13–20 Lexington, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union garrison of Lexington, Missouri Missouri State Guard 100, Union 3,500[61]
September 17 Liberty, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union 3rd Iowa Infantry Missouri State Guard 70, Union 56[62]
September 19 Barbourville, Kentucky Confederate Department No. 2, Union Kentucky home guard Confederate 5, Union 15[63]
September 21 Fredericktown, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Missouri State Guard 62, Union unknown[64]
September 25 Springfield, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Missouri State Guard 133, Union 85[65]
September 25 Alamosa, New Mexico Territory Confederate cavalry, Union Department of New Mexico Confederate none, Union 10[66]
September 26 Hunter's Farm, Missouri Confederate Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Confederate 22, Union unknown[67]
September 27 near Fort Craig, New Mexico Territory Confederate and Union cavalry Confederate 10, Union 10[68]
September 27 Pinos Altos, New Mexico Territory Confederate Arizona Guards and civilians, Chiricahua, Minibreno, and allied Apaches Confederate and civilians 12, Apaches 30[69]
October 3 Greenbrier River, West Virginia Confederate infantry, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 52, Union 43[70]
October 9 Santa Rosa Island, Florida Confederate brigade, Union garrison of Fort Pickens Confederate 87, Union 67[71]
October 12 Head of the Passes, Louisiana Confederate naval squadron, Union detachment of West Gulf Blockading Squadron none (one Confederate and three Union ships damaged)[72]
October 17–21 Fredericktown and Ironton, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union garrison Missouri State Guard 62, Union unknown[73]
October 21 Ball's Bluff, Virginia Confederate Army of the Potomac, Union Army of the Potomac Confederate 149, Union 1,000[74]
October 21 Camp Wildcat, Kentucky Confederate Department No. 2, Union Army of the Ohio Confederate 53, Union 43[75]
October 21 Fredericktown, Missouri Confederate Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Confederate 62, Union unknown[76]
October 25 Springfield, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union infantry Missouri State Guard 133, Union 85[77]
November 3–7 Port Royal, South Carolina Confederate Department of South Carolina, Union South Atlantic Blockading Squadron Confederate 40, Union 31[78]
November 7 Belmont, Missouri Confederate Department No. 2, Union Department of the West Confederate 641, Union 607[79]
November 8–9 Ivy Mountain, Kentucky Confederate Department No. 2, Union Army of the Ohio Confederate 263, Union 30[80]
November 19 Round Mountain, Oklahoma Confederate and Union Indians Confederate 10, Union unknown[81]
November 20 Brownsville, Kentucky Confederate detachment from Department No. 2, Union Department of the Cumberland Confederate 1, Union 12[82]
November 26 Hunter's Mills, Virginia Confederate Department of Northern Virginia, Union Army of the Potomac unknown[83]
December 9 Chusto-Talasah, Oklahoma Confederate and Union Indians Confederate 52, Union 412[84]
December 13 Camp Allegheny, West Virginia Confederate infantry, Union Department of the Ohio Confederate 146, Union 137[85]
December 17 Rowlett's Station, Kentucky Confederate Department No. 2, Union Army of the Ohio Confederate 91, Union 40[86]
December 17 Woodsonville, Kentucky Confederate Department No. 2, Union Department of the Cumberland Confederate 14, Union 33[87]
December 20 Dranesville, Virginia Confederate cavalry from Army of the Potomac, Union detachment from Army of the Potomac Confederate 230, Union 71[88]
December 26 Chustenahlah, Oklahoma Confederate and Union Indians Confederate 40, Union 211[89]
December 28 Mount Zion Church, Missouri Missouri State Guard, Union Department of the West Missouri State Guard 210, Union 72[90]
December 28 Sacramento, Kentucky Confederate and Union cavalry Confederate 5, Union 23[91]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Foote, pp. 48–50.
  2. ^ Foote, pp. 50–55.
  3. ^ Foote, pp. 69–70, 127–130.
  4. ^ Foote, pp. 78–82.
  5. ^ Foote, pp. 99, 104–108, 140–141.
  6. ^ Foote, pp. 86–88.
  7. ^ Foote, pp. 112, 115–120.
  8. ^ Foote, pp. 90–95, 98.
  9. ^ Josephy, pp. 44–51.
  10. ^ Foote, p. 50.
  11. ^ Davis, p. 5.
  12. ^ Brooksher, p. 60.
  13. ^ Brookser, p. 63.
  14. ^ Kennedy, p. 5.
  15. ^ Kennedy, p. 5.
  16. ^ Davis, pp. 33–34.
  17. ^ Poland, p. 40.
  18. ^ Poland, p. 84.
  19. ^ Newell, p. 99.
  20. ^ Kennedy, p. 6.
  21. ^ Newell, pp. 138–140.
  22. ^ Wills, p. 34.
  23. ^ Davis, pp. 71–72.
  24. ^ Poland, p. 45.
  25. ^ Brooksher, p. 90.
  26. ^ Brooksher, p. 100.
  27. ^ Wills, p 39.
  28. ^ Kennedy, p. 11.
  29. ^ Kennedy, p. 20.
  30. ^ Piston & Hatcher, pp. 102–103.
  31. ^ Newell, p. 137.
  32. ^ Kennedy, pp. 7–9.
  33. ^ Newell, p. 141.
  34. ^ Newell, p. 133.
  35. ^ Newell, pp. 138–139.
  36. ^ Newell, p. 158.
  37. ^ Davis, p. 148.
  38. ^ Gottfried, p. 18.
  39. ^ Gottfried, p. 74.
  40. ^ Piston & Hatcher, pp. 128–130.
  41. ^ Josephy, pp. 45–46.
  42. ^ Frazier, p. 60.
  43. ^ Piston & Hatcher, pp. 140–141.
  44. ^ Piston & Hatcher, pp. 142–143.
  45. ^ "Civil War Reference, Athens, Missouri page". History. Civil War Reference. Retrieved September 22, 2011. 
  46. ^ "Civil War Timeline, Chronology for August 1861". History. Blue and Gray Trail. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  47. ^ "Civil War Reference, Lovettsville, Virginia page". History. Civil War Reference. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  48. ^ Brooksher, p. 236.
  49. ^ "Civil War Reference, Potosi, Missouri page". History. Civil War Reference. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  50. ^ "Civil War Reference, Palmyra, Missouri page". History. Civil War Reference. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  51. ^ Robertson, p. 43.
  52. ^ Kennedy, p. 9.
  53. ^ Kennedy, pp. 59–60.
  54. ^ "Civil War Reference, Lexington, Missouri page". History. Civil War Reference. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  55. ^ "Civil War Reference, Munson's Hill, Virginia page". History. Civil War Reference. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  56. ^ Kennedy, pp. 23–24.
  57. ^ Robertson, p. 44.
  58. ^ Kennedy, p. 9.
  59. ^ Robertson, pp. 44–45.
  60. ^ Kennedy, p. 10.
  61. ^ Kennedy, p. 24.
  62. ^ Kennedy, p. 24.
  63. ^ Kennedy, p. 28.
  64. ^ Kennedy, pp. 24–25.
  65. ^ Kennedy, p. 25.
  66. ^ Frazier, pp. 106–107.
  67. ^ "Civil War Reference, Hunter's Farm, Missouri page". History. Civil War Reference. Retrieved September 22, 2011. 
  68. ^ Frazier, pp. 107–108.
  69. ^ Frazier, pp. 108–109.
  70. ^ Kennedy, p. 10.
  71. ^ Kennedy, pp. 27–28.
  72. ^ "Naval Historical Center, CSS Manassas (1861-1862) page". History. Naval Historical Center. Retrieved September 22, 2011. 
  73. ^ Kennedy p. 24.
  74. ^ Gottfried, p. 104.
  75. ^ Kennedy, p. 29.
  76. ^ "Civil War Reference, Fredericktown, Missouri page". History. Civil War Reference. Retrieved September 22, 2011. 
  77. ^ Kennedy, p. 25.
  78. ^ Foote, p. 119.
  79. ^ Hughes, pp. 184–185.
  80. ^ Kennedy, p. 29.
  81. ^ Josephy, p. 331.
  82. ^ Neal and Kremm, pp. 96–97.
  83. ^ "Civil War Reference, Hunter's Mills, Virginia page". History. Civil War Reference. Retrieved September 22, 2011. 
  84. ^ Josephy, p. 332.
  85. ^ Kennedy, p. 10.
  86. ^ Kennedy, pp. 29–30.
  87. ^ Neal and Kremm, p. 99.
  88. ^ Kennedy, pp. 18–19.
  89. ^ Kennedy, p. 34.
  90. ^ Kennedy, p. 27.
  91. ^ Hurst, p. 79.

Sources[edit]

  • Brooksher, William Riley. Bloody Hill: The Civil War Battle of Wilson's Creek. Washington, D.C.: Brassy's, 1995. ISBN 1-57488-018-7.
  • Davis, William C. Battle at Bull Run: A History of the First Major Campaign of the Civil War. New York: Doubleday & Company, 1977. ISBN 9780385122610.
  • Foote, Shelby. The Civil War: A Narrative. Volume I: Fort Sumter to Perryville. New York: Vintage Books, 1958. ISBN 0-394-74623-6.
  • Frazier, Donald S. Blood & Treasure: Confederate Empire in the Southwest. College Station, Texas: Texas A&M University Press, 1995. ISBN 0-89096-639-7.
  • Gottfried, Bradley M. The Maps of First Bull Run: An Atlas of the First Bull Run (Manassas) Campaign, including the Battle of Ball's Bluff, June–October 1861. New York: Savas Beatie, 2009. ISBN 978-1-932714-60-9.
  • Hughes, Jr., Nathaniel Cheaires. The Battle of Belmont: Grant Strikes South. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: University of North Carolina Press, 1991. ISBN 0-8078-1968-9.
  • Hurst, Jack. Nathan Bedford Forrest: A Biography. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1993. ISBN 0-394-55189-3.
  • Josephy, Jr., Alvin M. The Civil War in the American West. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1992. ISBN 0-394-56482-0.
  • Kennedy, Frances H. The Civil War Battlefield Guide, 2nd edition. New York: Houghton Miflin, 1998. ISBN 0-395-74012-6.
  • Moore, Frank. Anecdotes, Poetry, and Incidents of the War: North and South: 1860–1865. New York: The Arundel Print, 1888. OCLC 10343647
  • Neal, Diane and Thomas W. Kremm. Lion of the South: General Thomas C. Hindman. Macon, Georgia: Mercer University Press, 1993. ISBN 0-86554-422-0.
  • Piston, William Garnett & Richard W. Hatcher III. Wilson's Creek: The Second Battle of the Civil War and the Men Who Fought It. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: University of North Carolina Press, 2000. ISBN 0-8078-2515-8.
  • Poland, Jr., Charles P. The Glories Of War: Small Battle And Early Heroes Of 1861]. Bloomington, IN: AuthorHouse, 2006. ISBN 978-1-4184-5973-4.
  • Robertson, Jr., James I. General A. P. Hill: The Story of a Confederate Warrior. New York: Random House, 1987. ISBN 0-394-55257-1.
  • Wills, Mary Alice. The Confederate Blockade of Washington, D.C., 1861–1862. Shippensburg, Pennsylvania: Burd Street Press, 1998. ISBN 1-57249-078-0.

External links[edit]