Near Four Oaks in Johnston County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
The Battle Shifts East: Fighting on March 21
To take pressure off Mower, Howard ordered Blair and portions of Maj. Gen. John A. Logan's XV Corps to advance on the Confederate lines across Sam Howell Branch. A fierce fight between the two sides resulted in Confederate trenches changing hands multiple times throughout the day. The aggressive attacks and counterattacks resulted in heavy casualties on both sides. Despite being outnumbered,
The rebels kept up a tremendous fire on us, and seemed determined to retake their line. They drove our men on both left and right of us, but we held our guard for quite a distance, and poured such a galling fire into the rebel flank that they fell back, and our boys rallied and held the ground until dark...
—Pvt. Levi Nelson Green, 9th Iowa
[O]ur men were confident to the last, although they knew their opponent outnumbered them very largely, and were in fact enthusiastic for the fight.
—Gen. L. McLaws, letter to his wife, March 25, 1865
Maj. Gen. Joseph A. Mower's first division of the XVII Corps broke camp around 10:00 a.m. The division was ordered to entrench on the right of Howard's line, overlooking Sam Howell Branch, to protect a ford along the battle line. Before marching into position, Mower asked permission from General Blair, to perform "a little reconnoisance [sic]" of Confederate positions near Bentonville. Making use of a nearly impassable route towards Mill Creek, Mower came upon the weakly-defended Confederate left flank by noon.
Topics. This memorial is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. A significant historical date for this entry is March 21, 1865.
Location. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Four Oaks NC 27524, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. "Uncle Billy" Comes to Bentonville (a few steps from this marker); Union Line, March 20 (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Union Headquarters (approx. 0.3 miles away); Main Union Line (approx. ¾ mile away); Mower’s Attack (approx. 0.8 miles away); Union Line, March 21 (approx. 0.8 miles away); Main Confederate Line (approx. 0.8 miles away); Hardee’s Charge (approx. 0.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Four Oaks.
Credits. This page was last revised on April 20, 2021. It was originally submitted on January 28, 2017, by Karl Stelly of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 188 times since then and 10 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on January 28, 2017, by Karl Stelly of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.