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Battle Of Greenbrier Essay

815 words - 4 pages

The Battle of Greenbrier River or the Battle of Camp Bartow took place on October 2-3, 1861.The skirmish took place near the base of Cheat Mountain in present day Pocahontas County, West Virginia. The operation would take June through December to carry out. General Reynolds thought if he could get rid of Camp Bartow he could easily get to the Virginia counties on the other side of the mountains to the east. Brigade General Joseph Reynolds was the Union commander while Brigade General Henry R. Jackson was the Confederate Commander.` Reynolds had about 5000 men of different arms. His main force included 24th, 25th, and 32nd Ohio Infantry, 7th, 9th, 13th, 14th, 15th, and 17th Indiana Infantry, 4th U.S. Artillery, and several others. General Jackson had about 2000 men. He had reported that his army was a third of its strength due to sickness and disease that easily spread in the camp’s harsh conditions. His main force included 1st and the 12th Georgia Infantry, 23rd and 44th and a battalion of the 25th Virginia, 3rd Arkansas Infantry, and 31st Virginia Infantry and a couple of others. Despite heavy firing and spirit fighting the casualties were extremely low.
The Union actually had 8 men killed, and had 35 wounded men. Some reports say that a man had his arm blow off and he took his knife and cut the still connected sinews. The Confederates had lost six men, had 33 injured men, and 13 men were missing in action. The missing 13 were later discovered had been taken prisoner by General Reynolds. The Union attacked about eight o’clock in the morning and forced back the picket lines, driving them back with rifle fire. The Confederates were so out gunned that they were getting one shot in for every four Union shots. General Reynolds decided to test the left flank first and he sent men to that side. What he met there sent his advancing lines scrambling backward, away from the bombardment of artillery and ammunition.
During the battle a yellow flag meant field hospital and the flag showed were it was. Unfortunately, the surgeon couldn’t find a yellow flag, so instead he waved a white flag. Immediately General Reynolds sent a messenger under the flag of truce to inquire whether they were surrendering or not. The Colonel who was asked said, “Go back and shoot...

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