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150th Anniversary (1864–2014) This Month in the Civil War: Battle of Fort Stevens

Civil War Collection 150th Anniversary

On July 11–12, 1864, Confederate general Jubal Early led his troops in an attempt to take Washington DC. The beleaguered Robert E. Lee had sent Early north to create havoc that would draw Federal soldiers away from Petersburg and Richmond, thus relieving some of the pressure on those cities.

Early and his men traveled to the US capital, leaving mid-June and arriving July 11. They were delayed along the way by an engagement (the Battle of Monocacy) with Lew Wallace‘s troops. Though that battle was a Union loss, the delay it created proved critical, as it allowed extra time for Federal soldiers to arrive in DC to shore up the depleted ranks defending the city.

The Battle of Fort Stevens consisted mainly of skirmishes, with no major clashes, though casualties amounted to 874. The battle is most notable, however, for President Abraham Lincoln‘s attendance as he stood atop Fort Stevens to watch the action. He was advised to leave, however, when a sharpshooter‘s bullet hit a man standing nearby. The battle ended when Early decided an attempt on the capital would fail and so withdrew his men during the night of the 12th.

8 Comments

  1. Didn’t Lincoln’s wife take a shot at the rebs during the Battle of Fort Stevens?

  2. A reb sharpshooter had a shot at a group of Union officers and a tall civilian. He shot and hit one of the officers thinking that he should not shoot at civilians not knowing that it was Lincoln.

  3. I LIVE IN THE WEST AND WHAT LINCOLN DID TO THE AMERICAN INDIANS SO THAT TROOPS OUT WEST WERE FREED UP OUT DOESN’T MAKE HIM LOOK LIKE A GREAT EMANCIPATER. CARROLL

  4. And here we are today under the thumb of federal tyranny were everything in America os seen as illegal without a govt issued license. It’s truly embarrassing that we preach of our freedom but we jail people for no seatbelts and not wanting to go to public government controled schools. Truly pitiful what America has become. People fined amd treated like criminals for building a balcony with a city permit. In my opinionated voice, its extortion from the public servents against tje people. Just saying…

  5. for those like alan and jackie,who makes you stay in such a place.? LEAVE

  6. For those who are citizens, your recourse to the less than stellar performance of elected officials, is to VOTE them out of office. And even those who hold high unelected offices can be replaced by changing the balance of power in Washington. THAT 9and our great military0 is what makes America better than all the rest. My $.02 worth.

  7. My Great Great Uncle, Pvt Will McCrary, New Co D, 5th Regt, Alabama Infantry, was shot in the arm and permanently disabled on July 12 just outside of Washington.