Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Large Clash In Florida

The largest battle fought in Florida was the Battle of Olustee fought on February 20th 1864.

Union Major General Quincy Adams Gillmore ordered an expedition into Florida in February 1864 to cut Confederate supply routes. Union Brigadier General Truman Seymour was placed in command of the expedition. Confederate Generals Alfred H Colquitt and Joseph Finegan were in command of the troops defending Florida.

Using the route of the Florida, Atlantic and Gulf Railroad, Seymour moved his 5,500 union soldiers toward Lake City, Florida. On the afternoon of February 20th 1864 they moved on the 5,000 Confederates commanded by Finegan and entrenched near Olustee Station. The two forces met at Ocean Pond. Seymour thinking these soldiers where the same as the Florida militia that he beaten easily before, sent in his troops piecemeal. Finegan and Seymour reinforced their committed troops placing the Union men under a withering line of rifle and cannon fire. The Union soldiers broke and retreated back to Jacksonville, Florida.

Union casualties in the Battle known as Olustee or Ocean Pond were 1,861 killed, wounded or missing. Confederate casualties were a lighter 946. The Union also lost 39 horses and 6 pieces of artillery.

For more information about this battle, check out the web site The Battle of Olustee

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