Battle Name: Battle of Kettle Run

Other Names: Battle of First Bristoe Station

Dates: August 27, 1862

Location: Prince William County

Campaign: Second Manassas

Commanders: Confederate - Richard S. Ewell, Federal - Joseph Hooker

Forces Engaged: N/A

Casualties: 300 Union, 150 Confederate

Description: On August 27, 1862, two of Confederate Gen. Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson's divisions plundered the Federal supply depot at Manassas Junction. Gen. Richard S. Ewell's division formed Jackson's rear guard at Bristoe Station on the Orange and Alexandria Railroad. Ewell knew the ground well, having been raised nearby at Stony Lonesome farm. Learning of Jackson's raid, Union Gen. John Pope sent Gen. Joseph Hooker's division north from Warrenton Junction along the railroad. Marching on an extremely hot afternoon, Hooker's troops encountered Ewell's skirmish line south of the Kettle Run bridge at 2 p.m. As fighting intensified, Col. Henry Forno's brigade (60th Georgia and 6th and 8th Louisiana Infantry) withdrew across the bridge and burned it. They regrouped on the other side with formidable artillery support. Col. Joseph Carr's Union brigade stormed across the stream into a hail of lead and shot which, as one Federal soldier noted, "caused a very unpleasant sensation." Ewell's division held firm, inflicting heavy casualties along the railroad until Col. Nelson Taylor's famed Excelsior Brigade advanced and gave the Federals superior numbers. About 4 p.m., Ewell commenced an orderly retreat across Broad Run. Fighting as it withdrew, Gen. Jubal A. Early's brigade disengaged last and crossed Broad Run about 6:00, burning the railroad. Nearby Bristoe Station Battlefield park is the site of an 1863 battle in this highly contested portion of Virginia. Federal casualties were about 300 killed and wounded. The Confederates lost about 150. Ewell withdrew to Manassas Junction, where that night Jackson torched the remaining Union supplies and then marched his men to favorable ground on the old Manassas battlefield to await Gen. Robert E. Lee and Gen. James Longstreet's wing. This set the stage for the Second Battle of Manassas on August 28-30, 1862.

Result: Confederate Victory


Source: Prince William County Historic Preservation Div.


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