Friday, October 17, 2008
Battle of Honey Springs, Oklahoma - Part Five
As he prepared to initiate the battle, General Blunt moved his men forward from the sheltered area where they had rested to the position that you see here.
On this ground, the Federal troops formed their line of battle.
The photograph was taken from the right flank of the Union line, looking east down the line toward the left flank. The Texas Road, a key feature for both troops, lay in the distance. The troops faced to the right of the photograph.
This position brought the two forces within artillery range of each other. The day was dark and cloudy, with General Cooper reporting that a heavy rain began to fall shortly after the battle opened at around 9 a.m. Eyewitnesses of both sides described how the artillery opened the fight.
This worked significantly to the advantage of the Federals, who had a superior number and weight of guns on the field. The Confederate infantry, formed in two lines in the trees beyond the right of this photo, were ordered to lay down on their weapons to present as limited a target as possible. The Federal infantry, according to Confederate eyewitnesses, was formed in lines four and five deep.
As the fire of the Southern cannon began to slow, Blunt ordered his troops to advance and the Battle of Honey Springs began in earnest.
Our series will continue.