“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Pocahontas in Hardeman County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)

Engagement at Davis Bridge

October 5, 1862

Engagement at Davis Bridge Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Graff, April 23, 2012
1. Engagement at Davis Bridge Marker
Inscription. By late spring 1862, United States forces in the West threatened to cut the Confederacy in two, having captured both New Orleans and Memphis on the Mississippi River, and the vital railroad hub at Corinth, Mississippi, thereby severing the Memphis & Charleston Railroad, the South's only east-west connection linking the Atlantic to the Mississippi Valley. Efforts to complete the split stalled that summer when Union naval forces failed to capture Vicksburg, and field armies struggled to control the vast territory occupied in the spring offensive. The Confederates seized on this lull to launch General Bragg's invasion into Kentucky, and, in early October, sent an army to capture Corinth. However, repulsed there with heavy losses after two days of brutal fighting, this southern force retreated back towards Davis Bridge on the Hatchie River.

With the southern army blocked by Federals advancing from Bolivar, Tennessee, fierce fighting engulfed the crossing. The day long conflict ended east of the river with the Confederates escaping to the south. The failure to retake Corinth proved the last Confederate offensive in Mississippi, as Union forces seized the initiative, and began a final relentless nine-month offensive to capture Vicksburg and take control of the Mississippi River.

Inset top: Photo of Union troops (re-enactors)
Engagement at Davis Bridge Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Graff, April 23, 2012
2. Engagement at Davis Bridge Marker
Trail leading east to the Hatchie River.
advancing in line of battle.

Inset: Location map

Inset Bottom Left - portrait of General Van Dorn, CSA, captioned:
The Commander of the Confederate forces, General Earl Van Dorn was headstrong and impulsive. Troops under his leadership incurred serious defeats at both Pea Ridge and Corinth, after which he was relieved of army command. Better suited to cavalry tactics, he conducted the daring raid on the Union supply depot at Holly Springs in December 1862, which helped thwart General U.S. Grant's first attempt to capture Vicksburg.

Inset Bottom Right - portrait of General Ord, USA, captioned: General E.O.C. Ord, commander of the Union troops, was wounded at Davis Bridge. He referred to it as "the miserable bridge." After recovering from his wounds, Ord returned to active duty during the Siege of Vicksburg. He served under General U.S. Grant through the remainder of the War and in 1865 commanded the Army of the James, directing it with great skill at both Petersburg and Appomattox.
Erected by National Park Service - Shiloh National Military Park.
Location. 35° 1.64′ N, 88° 47.997′ W. Marker is in Pocahontas, Tennessee, in Hardeman County. Marker is on Essary Springs Road 1.1 miles south of Wolf Pen Road, on the right when traveling north. Click for map. The marker is at a small parking area and marks the start of a trail leading to the battlefield at the Hatchie River. Marker is in this post office area: Pocahontas TN 38061, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 5 other markers are within 16 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Battle of Davis Bridge (approx. 0.2 miles away); Hell on the Hatchie (approx. 0.3 miles away); a different marker also named Battle of Davis Bridge (approx. 1.5 miles away); Battle Of Chewalla (approx. 8.7 miles away); The Trail of Tears (approx. 15.4 miles away).
Regarding Engagement at Davis Bridge. The trail to the Hatchie River battle site is about 1500 feet long and passes beside a small graveyard with the gravestones of both Union and Confederate soldiers. The trail follows the Civil War-era route of State Line Road. As of 2012 plans are in progress to install additional interpretive signage and a footbridge to recently preserved park land on the east side of the river.
Categories. War, US Civil
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by David Graff of Halifax, Nova Scotia. This page has been viewed 539 times since then and 106 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by David Graff of Halifax, Nova Scotia. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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