Friday, May 9, 2014

A Heavy Push

The Battle of Swift Creek was part of a push made by Union Major General Benjamin F Butler towards Petersburg, and was fought May 9th 1864.

Confederate General Bushrod R Johnson had a division on the south side of Swift Creek in a defensive position.   Johnson’s men were between Union Major General Benjamin Butler’s force and Petersburg, Virginia.  Butler pushed toward Swift Creek on May 9th 1864 and was met at Arrowfield Church, just north of Swift Creek by a Confederate attack.  The Union troops deployed along the railroad and turnpike.  The Confederate 21st South Carolina Infantry made a charge across the bridge and up the turnpike toward the Union troops and were fired on by an artillery battery.  The Union troops pushed the Confederates back delivering them heavy losses.  Butler didn’t follow up the attack, but settled into skirmishing and tearing up the nearby railroad tracks.

During the night Butler had his troops withdraw.  The Confederates made repairs to the railroad and had it running the next day.

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