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This detailed account profiles the troops whose last stand helped prevent the destruction of the Army of Northern Virginia, providing Before the heroic stand of the 20th Maine at Little Round Top, the 2nd and 20th Georgia Infantries, led by Brigadier General Robert Toombs, held off a veritable Yankee juggernaut and triumphed at Burnside's Bridge on Antietam Creek in This detailed account profiles the troops whose last stand helped prevent the destruction of the Army of Northern Virginia, providing Robert E Lee with yet another chance for a northern invasion.

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The Climactic Struggle of the 2nd and 20th Georgia at Antietam Creek

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More filters. Sort order. Hills troops. While there is no doubt that those troops were essent The bloodiest day of the Civil War happened on 17 September near Sharpsburg, Maryland and the Antietam Creek.

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Battle of Antietam - New World Encyclopedia

While there is no doubt that those troops were essential to maintaining the pushback of the Union soldiers in this area of the field, the Georgia regiments first made a stand with little more than rifles and a few canon holding off an amazing 5 charges before finally having to fall back. These same survivors rallied behind the lines and led their own charge driving back the bluecoats and saving the day.

Tucker's book is well researched with characters sketches of important soldiers along with a telling of the events through accounts left behind in letters and diaries. Let credit be given where it is due - to the courage of the Georgia soldiers. Aug 15, David Medders rated it liked it Shelves: civil-war-history. Tucker writes with keen insight and passion about the heroic exploits of the Georgia 2nd and 20th brigades during their tenacious defense of the Rohrbach Bridge over Antietam Creek on September 17, against the overwhelming numbers of the IX Corps of the Army of the Potomac under the command of General Burnside.

This was a pivotal battle protecting the southern right flank of General Robert E. Under the fiery leadership of Tucker writes with keen insight and passion about the heroic exploits of the Georgia 2nd and 20th brigades during their tenacious defense of the Rohrbach Bridge over Antietam Creek on September 17, against the overwhelming numbers of the IX Corps of the Army of the Potomac under the command of General Burnside. Under the fiery leadership of their leader, General Toombs, these Georgians were "truly Spartans in gray, who fought against impossible odds to achieve the Thermopylae of the Civil War.

Apr 15, Damon Lively rated it really liked it. It provides a very detailed account that vividly portrays the struggle at this area of Antietam battlefield.

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It has to be one of the most in depth written of this episode. It is historically from the Confederate Infantry Unit perspective and the history of Toombs as commanding those units. There are many similar acts of heroism and valor in the Civil War — this being one that may sometimes be overlooked but equally engaging in tale. You get a real visual in your mind of how climactic the moment was and how close further disaster was for Lee.

It is nicely written and something I would advocate for those with in depth Civil War interest — to pick up.

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Tony rated it liked it Aug 03, The terrain provided excellent cover for infantrymen, with rail and stone fences, outcroppings of limestone , and little hollows and swales. The creek to their front was only a minor barrier, ranging from 60 to feet m in width, and was fordable in places and crossed by three stone bridges each a mile 1. It was also a precarious position because the Confederate rear was blocked by the Potomac River and only a single crossing point, Boteler's Ford, was available should retreat be necessary.

And on September 15, the force under Lee's immediate command consisted of no more than 18, men, only a third the size of the Federal army. The first two Union divisions arrived on the afternoon of September 15 and the bulk of the remainder of the army late that evening. Although an immediate Union attack on the morning of September 16 would have had an overwhelming advantage in numbers, McClellan's trademark caution and his belief that Lee had over , men caused him to delay his attack for a day.

This gave the Confederates more time to prepare defensive positions and allowed Longstreet's corps to arrive from Hagerstown and Jackson's corps, minus A. Hill's division, to arrive from Harpers Ferry. Jackson defended the left northern flank, anchored on the Potomac, Longstreet the right southern flank, anchored on the Antietam, a line that was about 4 miles 6 km long.

As the battle progressed and Lee shifted units, these corps boundaries overlapped considerably.

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Meade's division cautiously attacked the Confederates under Hood near the East Woods. After darkness, artillery fire continued as McClellan continued to position his troops. McClellan's plan was to overwhelm the enemy's left flank. He arrived at this decision because of the configuration of bridges over the Antietam.

The lower bridge which would soon be named Burnside Bridge was dominated by Confederate positions on the bluffs overlooking it. The middle bridge, on the road from Boonsboro, was subject to artillery fire from the heights near Sharpsburg. But the upper bridge was 2 miles 3 km east of the Confederate guns and could be crossed safely. McClellan planned to commit more than half his army to the assault, starting with two corps, supported by a third, and if necessary a fourth. He intended to launch a simultaneous diversionary attack against the Confederate right with a fifth corps, and he was prepared to strike the center with his reserves if either attack succeeded.

He shifted men to his left flank and sent urgent messages to his two commanders who had not yet arrived on the battlefield: Lafayette McLaws with two divisions and A. Hill with one division. McClellan's plans were ill-coordinated and executed poorly. He issued to each of his subordinate commanders only the orders for his own corps, not general orders describing the entire battle plan. The terrain of the battlefield made it difficult for those commanders to monitor events outside of their sectors, and McClellan's headquarters were more than a mile in the rear at the Philip Pry house, east of the creek , making it difficult for him to control the separate corps.

Therefore, the battle progressed the next day as essentially three separate, mostly uncoordinated battles: Morning in the northern end of the battlefield, mid-day in the center, and afternoon in the south. This lack of coordination and concentration of McClellan's forces almost completely nullified the two-to-one advantage the Union enjoyed and allowed Lee to shift his defensive forces to meet each offensive, in effect producing a number of stalemates between the two armies on the battlefield.

The battle opened at dawn about a. Hooker's objective was the plateau on which the Dunker Church sat, a modest whitewashed building belonging to a local sect of German Baptists.


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Hooker had approximately 8, men, little more than the 7, defenders under Stonewall Jackson, and this slight disparity was more than offset by the Confederates' strong defensive positions. Jackson's defense consisted of the divisions under Alexander Lawton and John R. Jones in line from the West Woods, across the Turnpike, and along the southern end of the Miller Cornfield. Four brigades were held in reserve inside the West Woods. As the first Union men emerged from the North Woods and into the Cornfield, an artillery duel erupted.

Confederate fire was from the horse artillery batteries under Jeb Stuart to the west and four batteries under Col.

Stephen D. Lee on the high ground across the pike from the Dunker Church to the south. Union return fire was from nine batteries on the ridge behind the North Woods and four batteries of pounder Parrott rifles, 2 miles 3 km east of Antietam Creek. The conflagration caused heavy casualties on both sides and was described by Col. Lee as "artillery Hell. Seeing the glint of Confederate bayonets concealed in the Cornfield, Hooker halted his infantry and brought up four batteries of artillery, which fired shell and canister over the heads of the Federal infantry, covering the field.

Burnside's Bridge 71-28164

The artillery and rifle fire from both sides acted like a scythe, cutting down cornstalks and men alike. Meade's 1st Brigade of Pennsylvanians, under Brig. As Walker's men forced Seymour's back, aided by Lee's artillery fire, Ricketts's division entered the Cornfield, also to be torn up by artillery.

George L. Hartsuff and Col. William A. Christian—had difficulties reaching the scene. Hartsuff was wounded by a shell, and Christian dismounted and fled to the rear in terror. When the men were rallied and advanced into the Cornfield, they met the same artillery and infantry fire as their predecessors. The casualties received by the 12th Massachusetts Infantry, 67 percent, were the highest of any unit that day.

While the Cornfield remained mired in a bloody stalemate, Federal advances a few hundred yards to the west were more successful. John Gibbon's 4th Brigade of Doubleday's division recently named the Iron Brigade advanced down the turnpike, pushing aside Jackson's men. They were halted by a charge of 1, men from Starke's brigade, leveling heavy fire from 30 yards away.

After Starke was mortally wounded and exposed to fierce return fire from the Iron Brigade, the Confederate brigade withdrew. Although the cost was steep, Hooker's corps was making steady progress. Confederate reinforcements arrived just after 7 a. The divisions under McLaws and Richard H.