Saturday, November 22, 2008

First Fight For the Sea

The Battle of Griswoldville; the first battle fought during Sherman’s March to the Sea occurred on November 22nd 1864.

Confederate Major General Joseph Wheeler was leading a detachment of cavalry on the morning of November 22nd 1864 when they engaged the 9th Pennsylvania Cavalry on Gordon Road. The 9th charged, driving the Rebels back about mile and across a creek. Here the Confederates regrouped and made an advance on the Union 9th and the 5th Kentucky Cavalry. At this time the Union Cavalry was joined by Brigadier General Charles Walcutt’s Infantry. The Infantry was able to push the Confederates back through Griswoldville.

At this point command of the Union soldiers fell to Brigadier General Charles R Woods. He took up position at the edge of the woods on the Duncan farm, with an open field to his front. At about 2pm Wheeler’s cavalry along with Brigadier General Pleasant J Philips’ Georgia militia and a battery of artillery attacked. The Rebels advanced reaching a ravine about seventy-five yard from Walcutt’s position, under heavy canister fire. They tried to turn the in the Union flanks, but failed having to retreat into the ravine, from which they withdrew after darkness fell.

There were an estimated 712 casualties [62 Union and 650 Confederate], including General Walcutt who was wounded in the first part of the engagement.

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