Corinth Battlefield to Host 150th Anniversary Events
Shiloh National Military Park Superintendent John Bundy is pleased to announce the Corinth Battlefield Unit will offer a number of interpretive programs to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Corinth. Park staff will offer in-depth hikes interpreting the Battle of Corinth on the actual dates of the historic battle, October 3-5, 2012. "We are excited to offer visitors the opportunity to participate in detailed battlefield hikes on the actual ground where the events occurred, at the same time they occurred, 150 years later," Bundy stated.
"The hikes will provide visitors with a deeper understanding of what occurred during the fierce fighting, describe the real war experiences of the Northern and Southern soldiers, and provide rare opportunities for visitors to access park staff for extended periods of time on the battlefield," commented Bundy. The programs will allow visitors to experience portions of the battlefield not routinely visited by the public, and allow the hikers a chance to interact with rangers who will present in-depth analysis of the strategic and tactical movements of the troops.
In addition to the hikes offered on the anniversary dates of the battle, the park will offer a special program on Tuesday, October 2, 2012, from 6:00 - 7:00 pm. During this evening program, park rangers will set the stage for the Battle of Corinth. Visitors are encouraged to participate in this program to learn about the events that led to the Battle of Corinth.
The park will also host the 19th Alabama Civilian Corps on Friday, October 5 and Saturday, October 6, 2012. This living history organization will offer demonstrations of daily life during the Civil War. Demonstrations will take place throughout the day on Friday and Saturday and will include cooking, weaving, spinning, medicine, music, and dance.
To attend battlefield hikes, please contact park staff at 662-287-9273. Registered participants should meet the rangers at the appointed sites, and are encouraged to wear appropriate clothing and footwear for the programs. Visitors attending more than one hike are encouraged to have food and water available.
The Corinth Civil War Interpretive Center is located at 501 West Linden Street in Corinth, Mississippi.The Center is open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. For more information regarding the Battle of Corinth anniversary activities, contact park staff at 662-287-9273, visit our website at www.nps.gov/shil, or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ShilohNMP.
The following are the Battle of Corinth 150th anniversary hikes which are being offered, with starting times, terrain, and distances of each program:
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
Join Park Ranger Tom Parson for an hour long talk about the events which led to the Battle of Corinth. In the summer of 1862, the Confederacy launched offensive campaigns in Virginia, Kentucky, and Mississippi. Generals Earl Van Dorn and Sterling Price devised a bold plan to march north from Mississippi and sweep the Union forces out of West Tennessee and all the way to the Ohio River.
Wednesday, October 3, 2012
Park Ranger Tom Parson begins the first of four tours concentrating on the brigade of Brigadier General John C. Moore. Made up of five regiments, the brigade numbered nearly 2,000 men at the outset of the campaign. When the fighting ended the brigade had lost more men killed, wounded, and missing than any other Confederate brigade would suffer in a single battle during the entire war. The first program will travel to Oliver's Hill and walk over the ground Moore's men advanced across during the early fighting along the Beauregard Line of entrenchments.
10:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. ---- Caring for the Wounded and Dead
Join Park Ranger Rachel Winters for a discussion about the casualties in both armies and the medical care they received. Three days of fighting resulted in over 8,000 men killed, wounded, or captured. Corinth landmarks such as the Tishomingo Hotel and the Corinth House were pressed into service as hospitals as was nearly every public building and many of the private homes. Treatment in a hospital under primitive conditions was no guarantee of a swift recovery. In the days following the battle over 900 fresh graves were dug, and most of them are still located in the neighborhoods and fields around Corinth.
11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. ---- The Medal of Honor at Corinth
Ranger Jim Minor will take visitors on a short walk along the slopes adjacent to Battery Robinett and discuss those Union soldiers who were awarded our nation's highest military honor for their actions during the Battle of Corinth. One of those awards was presented to Lt. Colonel Wager Swayne of the 43rd Ohio Infantry who rallied his men and counter-attacked the Confederates on the very ground where the Interpretive Center now stands.
12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ---- John C. Moore's Brigade (part 2)
The 2nd part of the four programs tracing the actions of the men of the 42nd Alabama, 15th and 23rd Arkansas, 35th Mississippi, and 2nd Texas. In the early afternoon of October 3rd Union troops rallied and counter-attacked Moore's Brigade across the tracks of the Mobile & Ohio Railroad. The Confederates pushed back and entered a desperate fight to the north of a small Union fort known as Battery F. The tour will visit the site of captured Union camps where the counter-attack occurred as well the site from which Moore hurled his men against the defenders of Battery F.
2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ---- Hamilton's Flank Attack
Join Park Ranger Charlie Spearman and explore the confusion leading up to, and the ultimate failure of the Union flank attack at the close of the first day of fighting. General William Rosecrans discovered the Confederate left flank was wide open for attack and ordered the division of Brigadier General Charles Hamilton to exploit the opportunity. A series of misunderstood orders and a bungled attack prevented a serious threat from turning into a battlefield disaster. The car caravan tour will travel to the Confederate earthworks of the old Beauregard Line and to the site of the fighting at the White House fields.
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Park Ranger Tom Parson will share the thrilling events which led to the capture of a Confederate cannon in the early morning hours of October 4, 1862. General Earl Van Dorn ordered an artillery bombardment of the Union position in the pre-dawn darkness. The firing lasted for an hour when Union counter-battery fire forced the Southerners to withdraw from their exposed position. A cannon from Hoxton's Tennessee Battery was abandoned and in a daring charge across cleared ground, four men of the 1st United States Infantry captured the cannon and brought it inside the Union lines.
9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. ----Battery Powell and the Confederate Breakthrough.
Meet with Ranger Rachel Winters and join her in a walking tour along the Union defensive position between Battery Robinett and Battery Powell. The first Confederate assault of the morning struck the Union right at the small earthwork known as Battery Powell. The fort fell to the Confederates but was quickly retaken in a counter-attack that bolstered the Union right. Between the two forts the Southern forces broke through the line and penetrated to the very heart of Corinth. House to house fighting raged on the city streets and to the depot and the critical railroad crossing. The walk will lead from the visitor center to the site of Battery Powell and then on to Trailhead Park. From there visitors are welcome to visit the Crossroads Museum or return to the Interpretive Center.
10:15 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. ----Battery Robinett and Fuller's Ohio Brigade.
Meet with Ranger Jim Minor and walk the slopes of the ridge where Battery Robinett stood during the fighting. This talk will focus on the Union defensive position and the four Union regiments from Ohio that defended the crucial high ground. Discussions will include the deployment of Colonel John Fuller's brigade as well as the reserve regiment of Mower's brigade. The heavy fighting along this line resulted in the defeat of the Confederate forces under General Van Dorn as well as the capture of the colors of the 9th Texas Cavalry.
11:15 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. ----Battery Robinett and John C. Moore's Brigade (part 3).
Ranger Tom Parson will continue with the study of Moore's Brigade and their tragic assault on Battery Robinett. Under the leadership of Colonel William P. Rogers of the 2nd Texas Infantry, part of the brigade made three bloody attacks against the key to the Corinth defenses. While the fighting raged, two of Moore's regiments were sent across to the break in the Union line and penetrated into Corinth itself. In the third and final assault, Colonel Rogers was killed just a few feet from the Union earthwork. When General William Rosecrans learned of the bravery shown by Rogers he ordered the Colonel to be buried where he fell.
October 5, 2012
Join Park Ranger Tom Parson for the 4th and final tour following the brigade of General John C. Moore. The day following the Confederate retreat at Corinth, Moore's Brigade was rushed forward to secure the vital crossing of the Hatchie River at Davis Bridge. The 1,800 men of the command had dwindled to a mere 350 and the subsequent fighting on both banks of the river resulted in even more casualties. The tour will visit Matamora Ridge, the high ground from which the Union attack was launched, Burr's Branch where Moore made his stand, and finally, the site of Davis Bridge.
1:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ----The Confederate Retreat from Corinth.
Ranger Jim Minor will discuss the Confederate retreat from Corinth and General Van Dorn's aborted decision to return with his defeated army to attack Corinth from the south. The Army of West Tennessee was able to slip across the Hatchie River at Crum's Mill, Mississippi and make the long march to safety at Holly Springs.
2:00 p.m. to 2:45 p.m. ----The Occupation of Corinth
The Battle of Corinth did not end the military activity in Corinth. Join Ranger Tom Parson for a walk from the visitor center to downtown Corinth and a discussion of the Union occupation of Corinth which lasted until January, 1864. In addition, the return of the Confederates to the city and the attempts to place the railroads back into operation will be covered as participants make their way to Trailhead Park and the Depot.