The Battle of Wilson's Creek, also known as the Battle of Oak Hills, was the first major battle of the Trans-Mississippi Theater of the American Civil War. Fought on August 10, 1861, near Springfield, Missouri, between Federal forces and the Missouri State Guard, it is sometimes called the "Bull Run of the West."
At the beginning of the War, Missouri maintained an officially neutral status. However, its governor, Claiborne Fox Jackson, began to work with the Confederacy to bring Missouri out of the Union by purchasing arms from and fighting alongside Confederate troops. This resulted in his removal by a constitutional convention in July. In early August 1861, Confederates under the command of Brig. Gen. Benjamin McCulloch and Missouri State Guard troops under the command of Maj. Gen. Sterling Price approached Brig. Gen. Nathaniel Lyon's Army of the West, which was camped at Springfield. On August 9, both sides formulated plans to attack the other.
At about 5:00 a.m. on August 10, Lyon, in two columns commanded by himself and Col. Franz Sigel, attacked the Confederates on Wilson's Creek about 12 miles (19 km) southwest of Springfield. Confederate cavalry received the first blow and retreated from the high ground, later referred to as "Bloody Hill," and infantry soon rushed up to stabilize their positions. The Confederates attacked the Union forces three times during the day, but failed to break through the Union line. When General Lyon was killed during the battle and General Thomas William Sweeny wounded, Major Samuel D. Sturgis assumed command of the Union forces. Meanwhile, the Confederates routed Sigel's column south of Skegg's Branch. Following the third Confederate attack, which ended at 11:00 a.m., the Union withdrew. When Sturgis realized that his men were exhausted and lacking ammunition, he ordered a retreat to Springfield. The Confederates were too disorganized and ill-equipped to pursue the retreating Federal forces.
The Confederate victory buoyed Southern sympathizers in Missouri and served as a springboard for a bold thrust north that carried Sterling Price and his Missouri State Guard as far as Lexington. In late October, a convention organized by Jackson met in Neosho and passed out an ordinance of secession. Although the state remained in the Union for the remainder of the war, the Battle of Wilson's Creek effectively gave the Confederates control of southwestern Missouri. Today, the National Park Service operates Wilson's Creek National Battlefield on the site of the original conflict.
The casualties were about equal on both sides – around 1,317 Union and 1,230 Confederate/Missourian/Arkansan soldiers were either killed, wounded, or captured. Though the Confederate force won the field, they were unable to pursue the retreating Union forces to Rolla.
Lets see how things turned out on the table.....
That was a great game, and closer then the score suggests. looking at the forces left the Union still has a strong centre and left flank, whilst my centre is weaker. A few more turns and it could have gone either way. Its the biggest game we have played so far in terms of units on the board and terrain, and I loved it, it looked great set up like that.
Olivia afterwards said she needs to concentrate her forces more in the same sector, and go after things until they are dead instead of jumping around to different sectors. That of course does depend on the cards as she agreed, but she is really looking forward to the next game and determined to bring victory to the Union forces.