Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Battle of Antietam: This Day in Civil War History

During the three days, September 16th to the 18th of 1862, George McClellan met Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia at Antietam Creek outside Sharpsburg, Maryland. Though he commanded a force twice the size of Lee's, in his usual form, he didn't commit everything. (He kept 25% of his forces in reserve.) Lee fought the Federals to a standstill. Antietam Battle - US Civil War Sharpsburg Maryland 1862
September 17, 1862 was the bloodiest day of the Civil War. Federal losses totaled 12,410 and the Confederates lost 10,700 men. Although neither side won a decisive victory, General Robert E. Lee's failure to carry the war into the north was significant to the outcome of the war.
Lee's retreat let McClellan claim victory. It was enough to keep the English and the French from recognizing the Confederacy, and gave the north enough of a boost that it is credited, in part, with enabling Lincoln to issue the Emancipation Proclamation in January of 1863.

No comments: