Saturday, May 21, 2011
Sealed The Escape Route
In the early morning hours of May 21st 1863, Union Major General Christopher C Augur with the First Division of the XIX Corps moved north from Baton Rouge, Louisiana toward the intersection of Plains Store and Bayou Sara, Louisiana. He was looking for a landing for the rest of Union Major General Nathaniel P Banks’ troops. Leading Augur’s soldiers was Union cavalry under the command of Brigadier General Benjamin W Powers. Powers' men ran into Confederate skirmishers and fighting erupted. The fighting grew as more of the Union troops arrived.
At noon Confederate Colonel William R Miles left Port Hudson, Louisiana with reinforcements to support. By the time Miles reached the field however Power had retreated and the Union troops were going into camp for the night. Miles still made the decision to attack, and at first was successful. Then Augur collected his troops and made a counter attack. The Confederates retreated from Plains, pulling back into the defenses of Port Hudson. This sealed the route of escape for the Confederates garrisoned at Port Hudson.