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Definition: Bull Run, First Battle of from Philip's Encyclopedia

(July 21, 1861) American Civil War conflict, fought near Manassas, Virginia. Under-trained Union troops led by General Irvin McDowell, at first successful, were eventually routed by Confederate troops under General P.G.T. Beauregard, reinforced by General Thomas J. Jackson, who earned his nickname 'Stonewall' at the battle.

Summary Article: Bull Run, battles of
From The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia with Atlas and Weather Guide

In the American Civil War, two victories for the Confederate army under General Robert E Lee at Manassas Junction, northeastern Virginia, named after the stream where they took place: First Battle of Bull Run 21 July 1861; Second Battle of Bull Run 29–30 August 1862. The battles are known as the Battle of Manassas in the southern states.

21 July 1861 Union troops under General Irvin McDowell opened the battle with a determined attack on Pierre Beauregard's Confederates. This initial assault was firmly resisted by General Thomas Jackson's Virginia brigade, earning him the title ‘Stonewall Jackson’. The battle swayed back and forth and then Confederate reinforcements under General Joseph E Johnston arrived at a critical moment, turned the balance, and the Union troops fled the field in disorder.

29–30 August 1862 McDowell was replaced by a new general, John Pope, who boasted about what he was going to do to the Confederates, and General Robert E Lee sent Stonewall Jackson north to assess the strength of the Union forces. Lee discovered that the Union commander, Maj-Gen George McClellan, was sending Pope reinforcements, and so he took General James Longstreet's corps and set off north. Jackson initially harried Pope with cavalry and then met him head-on at Bull Run. Jackson held firm and, again in the nick of time, Lee and Longstreet appeared with reinforcements. Lee urged Longstreet to attack but Longstreet took so long over his dispositions that night fell before he was ready and it was not until the following morning that he finally went into action. When he did, all was forgiven; he fell upon Pope's force and scattered it. As with the first battle, this second engagement ended with the defeated Union forces running pell-mell for the safety of Washington, leaving 14,000 dead and wounded behind them.


From Manassas to Appomattox: Memoirs of Confederate General James Longstreet

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