Sunday, May 18, 2014

Battle of Yellow Bayou

As the Union General Nathaniel Banks attempted to retreat from his disastrous Red River Campaign, Richard Taylor continued to harass and attack Banks with his smaller Confederate force. The Federals had already escaped by the skin of their teeth at Bailey's Dam.150 years ago today the last battle of the campaign was fought along the Atchafalaya River. If Banks could cross this river, he would be safe from further Confederate attacks. But first his engineers had to build a bridge for the Union army to cross, and in the mean time Taylor arrived. The Federals went out to attack, and drove the Confederates for a time. Taylor counterattacked, and the fighting swayed back and forth for several hours. The fight was eventually brought to an end when the battlefield caught fire, and both sides withdrew from the fighting. Although the Confederates were not decisively defeated, they did not move forward again before Banks crossed the river to safety. In this fight the Federals lost about 350, the Confederates, 500.


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