The Aftermath of Carnifex Ferry

Tuesday, August 27, 1861

In Western Virginia, the routed Union troops from the sharp skirmish at Carnifex Ferry were still wandering back to their main camp at Gauley Bridge. The victorious Confederates under General Floyd did not follow them or attempt to move in Charleston, but instead fortified their camp and hoped to cut off communication between the Union troops at Gauley and their commander, General Rosecrans, to the north.1

Though the ongoing feud between Generals Floyd and Wise was set aside for a few days, General Lee, overseeing operations in Western Virginia, warned Wise that the “Army of Kanawha is too small for active and successful operation to be divided at present. I beg, therefore, for the sake of the cause you have so much at heart, you will permit no division of sentiment or action to disturb its harmony or arrest its efficiency.” This was too little, too late.

Lee was also worried about General Floyd’s position at Carnifex Ferry and wished for Wise to send reinforcements, as he was only seventeen miles away.2


As pointed out by Joshua Horn of Civil War 150th Anniversary, I had the dates wrong for the attack upon Cape Hatteras, the first day of which originally appeared in today’s post. The source that I was using, The Navy in the Civil War by Daniel Ammen, published in 1883, also had them wrong.

Ammen was a naval officer during the Civil War as part of the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron. He took part in the Battle of Port Royal, but not the Battle at Cape Hatteras.

This happens from time to time. It’s understandable to a point – I know that I can’t remember what I did twenty years ago. However, with a little more digging (very little more), I could have come up with the correct dates.

The posts that are being published now were written in March. March was… not a good month. Nevertheless, I apologize for the mix up. It is now fixed, though it leaves me (and you) with a very scant post for August 27, 1861.

My apologies and a thank you to Joshua.

  1. Military Reminiscences of the Civil War, Volume 1 by Jacob Dolson Cox, C. Scribner’s Sons, 1900. []
  2. Official Records, Series 1, Vol. 5, p810. []
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3 thoughts on “The Aftermath of Carnifex Ferry

  1. Don’t knock yourself out over it. This is a great blog! You wrote this up back in March? I’m not surprised. Keeping up with this blog every day would be a nightmare so it makes sense to do it far in advance. Keep up the good work. This is one of the only blogs I read every day.

    1. Thanks!

      I do the best I can with it and am loving (almost) every minute of it.

      Currently, I’m about four and a half months ahead. Right now, for example, I’m writing about the Burnside Expedition and some Buell vs. Halleck vs. McClellan silliness.

      Thanks for the encouragement. Messing up like I did can really take the wind out of your sails. Thankfully, I’m mostly steam powered. 🙂


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