Shiloh, Battle of



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Historical Data about the Battle of Shiloh

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Shiloh, Battle of

Shiloh, Battle of, also called the Battle of Pittsburg Landing, engagement of the American Civil War. The name Shiloh was taken from that of a meetinghouse, 5 km (3 mi) from Pittsburg Landing, that is on the Tennessee River, 14 km (9 mi) north of Savannah, Tennessee. Here on April 6, 1862, a Confederate army of 40,000 men under General Albert S. Johnston surprised and attacked a Union army of 45,000 men under General Ulysses S. Grant. During the battle, which lasted from dawn to dust and was one of the most desperate of the war, the Union troops were steadily driven back, but Johnston was killed, and his successor, General Pierre G.T. Beauregard, ordered operations suspended a few hours later. The following day Grant, with 25,000 reinforcements under General Don Carlos Beull, attacked the Confederates and forced them to withdraw to Corinth, Mississippi. Thus, Grant regained all the ground he had lost, and the two-day battle ended without a conclusive victory for either side. Casualties numbered more than 10,000 in each army. A national military park and cemetery commemorating the battle are located at Shiloh.

Data Bank



The Battle of Shiloh

Date: April 6-7, 1862

Location

  • In Tennessee near the Mississippi border beside the Tennessee River (Shiloh was a nearby church) at the site of a peach orchard, owned by Sarah Bell, in bloom at the time of the battle. (Observers compared peach blossoms cut down by bullets to snow.)

Generals

  • Union – Ulysses S. Grant with 45,000 troops (On second day, 25,000 reinforcements participated under General Don Carlos Beull.)

  • Confederate – Albert Sidney Johnston with 40,000 troops. After Johnston’s death, Pierre G.T. Beauregard took command of the Confederates.

Casualties: 23,746

Largest, bloodiest battle of the Civil War to that point. (Larger battles, like Gettysburg, were still to come.)


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