The American Civil War    
  McDowell; 8 May 1862 -
the Shenandoah Valley
  scale: 1:100, start: 3pm, 1 game turn = 30 mtn, visibility woods = 8"
     
     
  Brief background
When President Lincoln approved McClellan's drive on Richmond, capital of the Confederation, he insisted that troops were left behind to protect Washington against a Confederate attack up the Shenandoah Valley. Likewise, the Confederate high command was concerned about Union reinforcements for McClellan marching south through the same corridor and attacking Richmond. General 'Stonewall' Jackson was tasked with preventing such an advance. Despite an initial setback at 1st Kernstown, the objective resulted in Jackson's celebrated Shenandoah campaign during which he inflicted a whole string of defeats on the Union troops in his area of operation.
 
       
   
 
     
  After his defeat at Kernstown, Jackson withdrew south where he eventually met up with a small army under general E Johnson, who was being pursued by a Union force under general Robert H. Milroy. With the odds now against him, Millroy retreated west to the village of McDowell, where he hoped to receive reinforcements in turn. On the morning of May 8, the Confederate vanguard under Johnson drove the Union picket line from its position and occupied a long, scraggy spur called Sitlington's Hill, overlooking the Union camp on the other side of Bull Pasture River. When Union reinforcements arrived under the command of Gnl Robert C Schenk, the order was given to attack the Confederate position atop Sitlington's Hill, lest the Union army be surrounded upon the arrival of Jackson and overwhelmed and destroyed, since there was no easy retreat route from its position along Bull Pasture River. Around mid-afternoon, the Union army advanced. The difficult terrain made for heavy going, and when Jackson fed in reinforcements, the momentum slipped from the Union's grasp and they retreated.  
     
      Strategic map    
   
 
     
 

Game notes
- The Union units begin the game formed up in any formation the Union player chooses.

A note on the psychology of the fighting men.
The 12th Georgia infantry regiment was the only non-Virginia regiment in the Confederate army. Not to be outdone by the Virginians, they refused to give up their position in front of the Confederate line to retreat to a more easily defended spot: "We did not come all this way to Virginia to run before Yankees." At the end of the day, their number of 540 had suffered 180 casualties, or 40% of the total Confederate casualties in the battle.

Result
The Union army achieved the rare distinction of inflicting more casualties than receiving (259 Union vs 420 Confederate) in a lost battle. During the night, it withdrew. Jackson had expected a renewed attack during the night or the next day, but when he found the village deserted, he set off in pursuit.

 
     
   
 
      Stonewall Jackson's army on the march    
     
 
CONFEDERATE FORCES
Brig Gnl E. Johnson
From Johnson's Army of the Northwest on table
Brig Connor 12th Georgia 540 5/4/3 green
  25th Virginia 480 5/4/3 green
  31st Virginia 480 5/4/3 green
on table
Brigade Scott 44th Virginia 400 4/-/3 green
  52nd Virginia 550 5/4/3 green
  58th Virginia 550 6/5/4 green
C-in-C: Maj Gnl Stonewall Jackson - Excellent
From Jackson's Army of the Valley arrive turn 4
Brigade Taliaferro 10th Virginia 400 4/3/2 veteran
  23rd Virginia 320 4/3/2 veteran
  37th Virginia 550 5/4/3 veteran
arrive turn 7
Brig Campbell 21st Virginia 550 6/5/3 veteran
  42nd Virginia 400 4/3/2 veteran
  48th Virginia 550 5/4/3 veteran
  1st Virginia - Irish 320 3/-/2 veteran
Artillery Battery Carpenter 6 guns 1 stand  
 
     
 
 
Time table
15:00 start
15:30  
16:00  
16:30  
17:00  
17:30  
18:00  
18:30  
19:00  
19:30  
20:00  
20:30  
 
     
 
UNION FORCES
C-in-C: Brig Gnl Robert C Schenk
Brig McClean 25th Ohio 640 6/5/3 veteran
3rd Brigade 75th Ohio 640 7/6/4 green
Brig Milroy 52th Ohio 640 6/5/4 green
  73rd Ohio 640 6/5/4 green
  2nd Virginia 640 7/6/4 green
  3rd Virginia 640 7/6/4 green
Artillery 12th Ohio Light Artillery 8 guns 2 stands  
Brig Lee 55th Ohio 640 6/5/4 green
  82nd Ohio 640 7/6/4 green
  5th Virginia 800 8/7/5 green
Lyon's cavalry 1st Connecticut Squadron - arrives turn 2 250 3/-/2 green
Artillery Bty I, 1st Ohio Artillery 6 guns 1 stand  
  Bty K, 1st Ohio Artillery 6 guns 1 stand  
 
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