J.D.R. Hawkins

One bullet can make a man a hero… or a casualty.

Battle of Cedar Mountain

Today marks the 149th anniversary of the Battle of Cedar Mountain, which took place on August 9, 1862 in Virginia. The battle led up to the Second Battle of Manassas, or Bull Run.

The battle took place near the town of Culpeper, which, during the course of the war, changed hands 78 times. Prior to the battle, General Robert E. Lee had secured the safety of Richmond in the Seven Days Battles. President Abraham Lincoln grew panicky, so he enlisted Major General John Pope to take over the Union army. After hearing Pope’s proclamations against Southerners, General Lee told General Stonewall Jackson, “I want Pope to be suppressed.”

Jackson’s 22,000 Confederate troops outnumbered Union General Banks’ 12,000, but still, they nearly lost the battle. At one point, Jackson attempted to draw his sword and lead the battle, but because it had rusted to the inside of the scabbard, he had to raise the scabbard, with the sword inside it, to rally his troops. He later said the battle was “the most successful of his exploits.”

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