Buffington Island Battlefield (Portland, Ohio)

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Buckeye Bill

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* The Buffington Island Battlefield State Memorial Park (Entrance off SR 124).

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* The Buffington Island Battlefield is the site of the only significant Civil War battle in Ohio. On July 19, 1863, a Federal force of 3,000 cavalry, artillery, infantry, and navy personnel routed a column of 1,800 Confederate cavalry and artillery commanded by Brigadier General John Hunt Morgan.

From July 13 - 26, 1863, Morgan led a group of more than 2,000 men across Southern Ohio. His mission: to distract and divert as many Federal troops as possible from the action in Middle Tennessee and East Tennessee. Federal forces under the command of Major General Ambrose Burnside gave chase.

It was at Buffington Island (Portland, Ohio) on the morning of July 19 that two Federal cavalry columns led by brigadier generals Henry Judah and Edward Hobson, and two Federal gunboats under Lieutenant Commander LeRoy Fitch, cornered Morgan and his men as the Confederates were trying to cross the Ohio River. The two-hour battle resulted in 6 killed and 20 wounded on the Union side and 57 killed, 63 wounded, and 71 captured on the Confederate side. Throughout the day following the battle, Federal militia and regular troops captured 570 Confederates who had fled the field. The Federal troops dealt a heavy blow to Morgan’s men and resources, but, despite losing nearly half his men and all of his artillery and supplies, Morgan escaped. Major Daniel McCook, patriarch of the fighting McCook family, was mortally wounded in the battle.

Morgan’s remaining raiders turned north, exhausted and desperate to find another place to cross. On July 26, near Salineville, in Columbiana County, Federal cavalry under the command of Major W.B. Way defeated Morgan’s cavalrymen in a running fight. Later that day, Federal Major G.W. Rue’s cavalry surrounded Morgan's Raiders and succeeded in capturing General Morgan and the remnants of his command near West Point. Morgan's capture marked the end of Morgan’s Great Raid of 1863. (Ohio Historical Society)

* The John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail (Bashan, Ohio to Portland, Ohio).

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* The Battle of Buffington Island Kiosk.

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* The John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail (Tour Stop Marker - 25).

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* Ohio State Historical Marker (Federal Forces).

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* Ohio State Historical Marker (Confederate Forces).

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* Federal Daniel McCook Mortally Wounded Site (South of Battlefield on SR 124).

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* The Battle of Buffington Island Memorial.

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* American Indian Mound Near the Battle of Buffington Island Memorial.

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* The John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail (Tour Stop Marker - 26/Ohio River and Buffington Island).

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* The John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail (Tour Stop Marker - 28).

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RochesterBill

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Great post but I feel obligated to point out that Buffington Island is actually located in West Virginia.

In point of fact, Morgan was trying to GET to the island via a ford. Union naval vessels steamed into the channel, blocking his path.

Consequently, Morgan never set foot on Buffington Island.

His big mistake was in his belief that there were railroad bridges across the Ohio if he could just reach them. In fact there were none at the time.

So he was stuck feeling his way along the river, searching for fords, but the union forces, Ohio and West Virginia militia largely, already knew where they were and were waiting for him

As at Buffington, where the south shore was lined with West VA troops, most of whom had been chased from their homes earlier by Confederate forces and were well known to want revenge.

They were there before Morgan even got there because they already knew where the ford was.
 
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Buckeye Bill

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Great post but I feel obligated to point out that Buffington Island is actually located in West Virginia.

In point of fact, Morgan was trying to GET to the island via a ford. Union naval vessels steamed into the channel, blocking his path.

Consequently, Morgan never set foot on Buffington Island.

His big mistake was in his belief that there were railroad bridges across the Ohio if he could just reach them. In fact there were none at the time.

So he was stuck feeling his way along the river, searching for fords, but the union forces, Ohio and West Virginia militia largely, already knew where they were and were waiting for him

As at Buffington, where the south shore was lined with West VA troops, most of whom had been chased from their homes earlier by Confederate forces and were well known to want revenge.

They were there before Morgan even got there because they already knew where the ford was.
Thanks!

And this is why I included in my OP the battle took place in Portland, Ohio. This battlefield is maintained by the Ohio Historical Society based in Columbus, Ohio.

Bill
 
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Buckeye Bill

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The Ohio Historical Society website displays some good old fashioned cheekiness.

* SPOILER ALERT : The Battle of Buffington Island did not occur on Buffington Island, West Virginia.

lololololol,
Bill
 

bdtex

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Another great tour with photos to match. Looks like great weather too.
 

Buckeye Bill

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Another great tour with photos to match. Looks like great weather too.
Beautiful weather!

There are 56 tour stops attached to the John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail in Ohio. I completed 1 thru 10 last month. I completed 11 thru 42 on Friday. I will finish this tour next Wednesday. I will start at tour stop - 43 and finish at the surrender site at tour stop - 56 (just west of West Point, Ohio). The tour is over 550 miles long. I visited small towns that I never knew exited in the Buckeye state.

Life is good!
Bill
 
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RochesterBill

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The Ohio Historical Society website displays some good old fashioned cheekiness.

* SPOILER ALERT : The Battle of Buffington Island did not occur on Buffington Island, West Virginia.

lololololol,
Bill
Ohio has a sense of humor. Who knew?

I guess it should be more properly called The Battle FOR Buffington Island, since getting onto the thing was his goal.

What he didn't know is that it wouldn't have done him any good; the south shore of the river was swarming with really really angry mountain folks who were hoping to have the chance to slaughter Confederates.

It's a topic that doesn't get a lot of attention, but the Confederacy treated the West Virginians very very harshly. Sherman in Georgia had nothing on them. There was wholesale suffering across wide areas of that whole area.

Those people are not exactly the prisoner-taking sort.
 

John S. Carter

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* The Buffington Island Battlefield State Memorial Park (Entrance off SR 124).

View attachment 155167

* The Buffington Island Battlefield is the site of the only significant Civil War battle in Ohio. On July 19, 1863, a Federal force of 3,000 cavalry, artillery, infantry, and navy personnel routed a column of 1,800 Confederate cavalry and artillery commanded by Brigadier General John Hunt Morgan.

From July 13 - 26, 1863, Morgan led a group of more than 2,000 men across Southern Ohio. His mission: to distract and divert as many Federal troops as possible from the action in Middle Tennessee and East Tennessee. Federal forces under the command of Major General Ambrose Burnside gave chase.

It was at Buffington Island (Portland, Ohio) on the morning of July 19 that two Federal cavalry columns led by brigadier generals Henry Judah and Edward Hobson, and two Federal gunboats under Lieutenant Commander LeRoy Fitch, cornered Morgan and his men as the Confederates were trying to cross the Ohio River. The two-hour battle resulted in 6 killed and 20 wounded on the Union side and 57 killed, 63 wounded, and 71 captured on the Confederate side. Throughout the day following the battle, Federal militia and regular troops captured 570 Confederates who had fled the field. The Federal troops dealt a heavy blow to Morgan’s men and resources, but, despite losing nearly half his men and all of his artillery and supplies, Morgan escaped. Major Daniel McCook, patriarch of the fighting McCook family, was mortally wounded in the battle.

Morgan’s remaining raiders turned north, exhausted and desperate to find another place to cross. On July 26, near Salineville, in Columbiana County, Federal cavalry under the command of Major W.B. Way defeated Morgan’s cavalrymen in a running fight. Later that day, Federal Major G.W. Rue’s cavalry surrounded Morgan's Raiders and succeeded in capturing General Morgan and the remnants of his command near West Point. Morgan's capture marked the end of Morgan’s Great Raid of 1863. (Ohio Historical Society)

* The John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail (Bashan, Ohio to Portland, Ohio).

View attachment 155166


* The Battle of Buffington Island Kiosk.

View attachment 155168

* The John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail (Tour Stop Marker - 25).

View attachment 155169

* Ohio State Historical Marker (Federal Forces).

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* Ohio State Historical Marker (Confederate Forces).

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* Federal Daniel McCook Mortally Wounded Site (South of Battlefield on SR 124).

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* The Battle of Buffington Island Memorial.

View attachment 155173

* American Indian Mound Near the Battle of Buffington Island Memorial.

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* The John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail (Tour Stop Marker - 26/Ohio River and Buffington Island).

View attachment 155175

* The John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail (Tour Stop Marker - 28).

View attachment 155176
Thanks very much for this.So the war was a war that went beyond those states that historians have written so much about,that it was a war that covered the other states.I have not read of Morgan's raid into Ohio.Was Morgan exchanged or escape?
 

Buckeye Bill

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Thanks very much for this.So the war was a war that went beyond those states that historians have written so much about,that it was a war that covered the other states.I have not read of Morgan's raid into Ohio.Was Morgan exchanged or escape?
After John Hunt Morgan surrendered near West Point, Ohio, he was transported to the Ohio (State) Penitentiary in Columbus. He would escape in the fall of 1863 and make his way into the state of Tennessee. He would eventually be killed in action at Greeneville, Tennessee on September 4th, 1864.

Bill
 
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Buckeye Bill

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Wonderful photos. Still need to get to this location.
I visited this battlefield in 2011. The Ohio Historical Society was starting to build the kiosk and place markers in the area. They have done a wonderful job with this venue! It is just a shame the main section of the battlefield was not preserved. A gravel pit is covering it.

I would highly recommend a trip. After my first visit to the Buffington Island Battlefield in 2011 , I visited the Sherman house and museum in Lancaster, Ohio.

By the way, I have enjoyed my John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail tour through Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio. I will complete the Ohio tour on Wednesday. My final stop will be the surrender site on SR 518 just west of West Point, Ohio.

Bill
 
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Buckeye Bill

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After my tour of the Northeastern sites of the John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail in Ohio, I will create a thread with this map and place my photos within.

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Eric Wittenberg

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The Ohio Historical Society interpretive kiosk on the four acre parcel owned by OHS is quite nice. I helped to write those interpretive panels. They're very well cone.

I note that you took no photos of the sand and gravel pit, Bill. That's the spot where Judah's and Hobson's forces converged and squeezed Morgan's men. It's the site of the heaviest fighting. I was involved in the attempt to stop it from being built. We were unable to prevail--the sand and gravel company argued that the size and blend of gravel there was unique and could not be found anywhere else, and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources bought into the argument. After that, we failed with the Army Corps of Engineers, and it was all over. When the criminal Bob Taft refused to consider appropriating the land by eminent domain, it became cast in stone.

The worst part?

The sand and gravel company is under no obligation to fill that pit back in the when they're done. The proposal that was approved was to fill it as a lake for recreational purposes, meaning that the portion of the battlefield where the heaviest portion of the fighting occurred has been forever obliterated.

Come back some time, and I will take you to Duke's surrender site. It's impossible to find if you don't know where you're going or if you're not with someone who does know.
 
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