Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Battle of Honey Springs, Oklahoma - Part Two
This photograph shows all that remains of what was once a massive system of earthworks built by the Union army in 1863 to protect their base at Fort Gibson.
Called Fort Blunt, after General Blunt, by the Federals, the extensive earthen walls surrounded an extensive post area adjacent to the old Fort Gibson that had been built by the U.S. Army prior to the Trail of Tears.
Most of the vast fortification no longer exists, but this small section of earthwork can still be seen at the Oklahoma Historical Society's Fort Gibson Historic Site. The surviving earthworks are located down the hill from the Visitor's Center and were once part of the southwest wall of the irregular fort.
General Blunt was here when he learned that Cooper's force had taken up a position at Honey Springs Depot on the Texas Road. Cooper was waiting for the arrival of additional forces from Fort Smith under General Cabell before moving north in a campaign against the Federals at Fort Blunt. Deciding to strike before the two Confederate generals could unite their forces, Blunt moved out from his fortifications.
As our series continues tomorrow, we will look at the Confederate position at Honey Springs Depot. As the week goes along, we will also be launching our full site on the Battle of Honey Springs at www.exploresouthernhistory.com/honeysprings1.