Friday, 22 July 2011

Battle of Cedar Creek

After last weeks Battle of Bakersville at the club, it was decided to do a follow up battle. The situation was as follows. After the defeat of 2 Union Corps at Bakersville, Lt General Ewell (Me) advanced a little north of the town and rested the Corps, whilst Longstreet pursued the remenants of the Union forces further north. Arriving late at the Cedar Creek Lt General Ewell called a halt and the Divisions of Rodes, Johnson and Early settled down in their current locations.

As dawn broke, Brigadier Hampton and his cavalry whom at earlier been dispatched north of the Creek sent back a messenger with the news that he was in contact with the lead elements of what he estimated to be a full Union Corps. He estimated that they were no more than an hour away before they would be upon our encampments.

Rodes' and Johnson's Divisions were positioned as shown on the map below. Early was somewhere to the East and would be marching to the sound of the guns.

The Battle unfolds

As the union Corps of Sykes advanced down the lane they were met with a hail of shot from Hampton's troopers which checked their initial advanc. it then took a number of turns for the Union forces to begin to deploy north of the Creek. This allowed Johnson to bring forward his Division while Rodes prepared to defend Bolton farm and the main ford.

Hampton's brigade quickly re mounted in the face of heavy pressure and rode of to the west to try and find a way through the woods and circle behind the union troops. The Union V Corps then began to deploy its artillery while pushing forward their infantry across the creek to meet Johnson head on. It was at this time that Early arrived from the East and fell upon their flank. It took over 6 turns of heavy fighting and stubborn union resistance to finally force them across the creek.

Johnson's Division advances

Early's Division appears
It was at this time then General Rodes' saw his left flank threatened by the appearance of a second union Corps emerging through the woods to cross the creek. They was also supported by a Cavalry Dision. Rodes quickly re aligned his defenders and re positioned his artillery to meet this threat, despite being heavily outnumbered.

Union III Corps arrives

It was at this time that disaster befell the union V Corps, despite gallantly hanging in they eventually wee swept from the field. Of 8 Brigades, only one remained. General Sykes himself was captured by Avery's brigade along with 2 reserve artillery batteries. For the Union III Corps things did not go much better when finally getting into position to launch an attack on Rodes, the Confederates promptly charged them, sweeping aside Humphreys brigade. With both Early and Jonson advancing to support Rodes' gallant defenders the III Corps broke off its assault and retreat back into the woods, leaving the Rebsonce more in charge of the field.

Some extra photos of an enjoyable game

V Corps finally driven back

2 Confederate brigades prepare to defend the ford

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