Battle of Deserted House

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The battle of Deserted House (or Kelly’s Store) was a minor engagement during the American Civil War in southeast Virginia.

Confederate forces under Brig. Gen. Roger A. Pryor crossed the Blackwater River into southeast Virginia on a foraging expedition.[3] Maj. Gen. John J. Peck commanded the Union garrison at Suffolk. Peck organized a force to drive Pryor out of the area and assigned Brig. Gen. Michael Corcoran to its command.[4] Anticipating an attack from the Union garrison, Pryor prepared his forces for battle near Kelly’s Store, located 8 miles west of Suffolk.[5] Corcoran’s cavalry engaged Pryor’s forces near a place called Deserted House. The Confederates retreated two miles before making another stand. The 13th Indiana Infantry charged and routed this new line. A final stand by the Confederates was made along the Blackwater River which was broken by the 11th Pennsylvania Cavalry.[6] Corcoran’s force returned to Suffolk the following day. In April, a larger foraging effort and demonstration against Suffolk was carried out by Lt. Gen. James Longstreet.