20 Sep 2012

The Battle of Philippi

The Battle of Philippi

The Battle of Philippi also known as The Philippi Races 3 June 1861. Union, under Colonels Benjamin Franklin Kelley and Frederick W. Lander, 3,000. Killed, 2, wounded 2, missing 2. Confederate, under Col. George A. Porterfield, numbers not reported. Killed, 16 wounded, unknown missing 26. 

In conformity with our plan we proceed to narrate the progress of battles in the order of their succession, which carries us, in rapid transition, from one portion of the country to another, and brings each action vividly before the eye as it transpires. The most important engagement, after the fighting in the streets of Baltimore, the occupation of Annapolis and Alexandria, and the attacks of the enemy's batteries on Aquia Creek, was that at Philippi, in Western Virginia, on the 3 June 1861. The Union forces, under the command of Brigadier General Thomas A. Morris, were in the possession of Grafton. The rebels were at Philippi, under Colonel George A. Porterfield. Having determined to send out an expedition to surprise them, it was organized in two divisions one, consisting of the First Virginia Regiment, and the Ninth and Sixteenth Ohio, under the command of Colonel Benjamin Franklin Kelley the other, of the Sixth and Seventh Indiana, the Fourteenth Ohio, and a section of artillery, under the combined command of Colonels Ebenezer Dumont and Frederick W. Lander. They set out on their march in a terrific storm, through an unexplored and uneven country, on the night of the 2d of June. At four o'clock in the morning. Frederick W. Lander, who was to attack the enemy in front, took up his position across the river on a hill commanding the town. Benjamin Franklin Kelley was to attack them in rear. The plan matured at headquarters failed in its execution. Benjamin Franklin Kelley was impeded in his march of twenty-two miles by roads rendered almost impassable by the darkness of the night and the violence of the storm. On arriving, he found the town aroused instead of surprised, and Frederick W. Lander already engaged with the enemy. To add to the discomfiture caused by the lateness of his force, it came up in the wrong direction. Recovering from this error, however, it charged upon the enemy's encampments with improved promptness and great gallantry. Frederick W. Lander's batteries had in the mean time done terrible execution. Suddenly, while Benjamin Franklin Kelley was pressing them closely, he came down the hill like a thunderbolt, and joined iii the pursuit of the enemy. In this action Colonel Benjamin Franklin Kelley was severely wounded. Sixteen of the rebels were killed several wounded and taken prisoners, and a large quantity of camp equipage, arms, etc., were captured. 

Orders of Battle

Confederate Commander-in-chief George A. Porterfield

1st Brigade, under the command of 

1 x Confederate Infantry Regiment
1 x Confederate Infantry Regiment

2nd Brigade, under the command of 

1 x Confederate Infantry Regiment
1 x Confederate Infantry Regiment
1 x Artillery 

Union Commander-in-chief Thomas A. Morris

1st Brigade, under the command of Colonel Benjamin Franklin Kelley

1st Virginia Regiment
9th Ohio Infantry Regiment
16th Ohio Infantry Regiment

2nd Brigade, under the command of Colonels Ebenezer Dumont and Frederick W. Lander

6th Indiana Infantry Regiment
7th Indiana Infantry Regiment
14th Ohio Infantry Regiment 
1 x Artillery

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The Battle of Philippi

How it Played


1 Sep 2012

The Battle of Stalingrad Project

The Battle of Stalingrad Project

On 28 June 1942, Army Group South began Operation Blau, the German Army's summer offensive into southern Russia. The goals of the operation were to secure both the oil fields at Baku, Azerbaijan, and the city of Stalingrad on the river Volga to protect the forces advancing into the Caucasus.  After two months, the 6th Army reached the outskirts of Stalingrad on 23 August. On the same day, over 1,000 aircraft of the Luftflotte 4 bombed the city, killing many civilians.

Stalingrad was defended by the Soviet 62nd Army under the command of General Vasily Chuikov. Despite German air superiority over Stalingrad, and with more artillery pieces than the Red Army, progress was reduced to no more than several meters a day. Eventually, by mid November, the 62nd Army had been pushed to the banks of the Volga, but the 6th Army was unable to eliminate the remaining Soviet troops.

On 19 November the Stavka launched Operation Uranus, a major offensive by Soviet forces on the flanks of the German army.  The first pincer attacked far to the west of the Don, with the second thrust beginning a day later attacking far to the south of Stalingrad. The 6th Army's flanks were protected by Romanian and Hungarian troops, who were quickly routed, and on 23 November, the pincers met at Kalach-na-Donu, thereby encircling 6th Army. A relief attempt was launched on 12 December, codenamed Operation Winter Storm and failed. The army surrendered between 31 January and 2 February 1943. German casualties are 147,200 killed and wounded and over 91,000 captured, the latter including 24 generals and 2,500 officers of lesser rank.  Only 5,000 would return to Germany after the war.

My Stalingrad Book Library.

6th Army, Orders of battle, Stalingrad
62nd Army, Orders of battle Stalingrad