Camp Chase Gazette

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Battle of Cabin Creek   

Other Names: None

Location: Mayes County

Date(s): July 1-2, 1863

Commanders: Col. James M. Williams [US]; Col. Stand Watie [CS]

Forces Engaged: Detachments from nine units [US]; two regiments and detachments from two other units (approx. 1,600-1,800) [CS]

Estimated Casualties: 88 total (US 23; CS 65)

Description: Col. James M. Williams of the First Kansas Colored Infantry led a Union supply train from Fort Scott, Kansas, to Fort Gibson, Oklahoma (then Indian Territory). As he approached the crossing of Cabin Creek, he learned that Confederate Col. Stand Watie, with about 1,600 to 1,800 men intended to assault him there. Watie was waiting for about 1,500 reinforcements under the command of Brig. Gen. William L. Cabell to join him before attacking the supply train. Cabell, however, was detained due to high water on Grand River. Cabin Creek also had high water, preventing a crossing at first, but when it had receded enough, Williams drove the Confederates off with artillery fire and two cavalry charges. The wagon train continued to Fort Gibson and delivered the supplies, making it possible for the Union forces to maintain their presence in Indian territory and take the offensive that resulted in a victory at Honey Springs and the fall of Fort Smith, Arkansas.

Result(s): Union victory

Battle of Chustenahlah   

Other Names: None

Location: Osage County

Date(s): December 26, 1861

Commanders: Chief Opothleyahola [I]; Col. James McQueen McIntosh [CS]

Forces Engaged: Creek and Seminole [I]; McIntoshs and Douglas Coopers brigades [CS]

Estimated Casualties: Unknown

Description: Confederate troops had undertaken a campaign to subdue the Native American Union sympathizers in Indian Territory and consolidate control. They had attacked Chief Opothleyaholas band of Creeks and Seminoles earlier at Round Mountain and Chusto-Talasah. Now, they wanted to finish them off by assaulting them in their camp at Chustenahlah in a well-protected cove on Battle Creek. Col. James McQueen McIntosh and Col. Douglas H. Cooper, commanding the Indian Department, planned a combined attack with each of their columns moving on the camp from different directions. McIntosh left Fort Gibson on December 22, with 1,380 men. On the 25th, he was informed that Coopers force could not join for a while, but he decided to attack the next day, despite being outnumbered. McIntosh attacked the camp at noon on the 26th. The Union defenders were secluded in the underbrush along the slope of a rugged hill, but as the Confederate attack came forward, the Native Americans began to fall back, taking cover for a while and then moving back. The retreat became a rout as the Federals reached their camp. They attempted to make a stand there but were forced away again. The survivors fled;  many went all the way to Kansas where they found loyal Unionists. Chief Opothleyaholas band of Creeks and Seminoles mounted no resistance again.

Result(s): Confederate victory

Battle of Chusto-Talasah  

Other Names: Caving Banks

Location: Tulsa County

Date(s): December 9, 1861

Commanders: Chief Opothleyahola [I]; Col. Douglas H. Cooper [CS]

Forces Engaged: Creek and Seminole [I]; Indian Department [CS]

Estimated Casualties: Unknown

Description: Following Chief Opothleyahola and his Union forces defeat at Round Mountain, he retreated northeastward, in search of safety. On December 9, 1861, the force was at Chusto-Talasah, or Caving Banks, on the Horseshoe Bend of Bird Creek when Col. Douglas H. Coopers 1,300 Confederates attacked Chief Opothleyahola around 2:00 pm. Chief Opothleyahola knew Cooper was coming and had placed his troops in a strong position at Horseshoe Bend. For almost four hours, Cooper attacked and attempted to outflank the Federals, finally driving them east across Bird Creek just before dark. Cooper camped there overnight but did not pursue the Federals because he was short of ammunition.  The Confederates claimed victory. Chief Opothleyahola and his band moved off in search of security elsewhere. Although the Confederates had gained a victory, they would win a resounding one later in the month at Chustenahlah.

Result(s): Confederate victory

Battle of Honey Springs   

Other Names: Elk Creek, Shaws Inn

Location: Muskogee County and McIntosh County

Date(s): July 17, 1863

Commanders: Maj. Gen. James G. Blunt [US]; Brig. Gen. Douglas H. Cooper [CS]

Forces Engaged: District of the Frontier [US]; 1st Brigade, Native American troops [CS]

Estimated Casualties: 716 total (US 79; CS 637)

Description: Union and Confederate troops had frequently skirmished in the vicinity of Honey Springs Depot. The Union commander in the area, Maj. Gen. James G. Blunt, correctly surmised that Confederate forces, mostly Native American troops under the command of Brig. Gen. Douglas H. Cooper, were about to concentrate and would then attack his force at Fort Gibson. He decided to defeat the Confederates at Honey Springs Depot before they were joined by Brig. Gen. William Cabells brigade, advancing from Fort Smith, Arkansas. Blunt began crossing the swollen Arkansas River on July 15, 1863, and, by midnight on July 16-17, he had a force of 3,000 men, composed of whites, Native Americans, and African Americans, marching toward Honey Springs. Blunt skirmished with Rebel troops early on the morning of the 17th, and by midafternoon, full-scale fighting ensued. The Confederates had wet powder, causing misfires, and the problem intensified when rain began.  After repulsing one attack, Cooper pulled his forces back to obtain new ammunition. In the meantime, Cooper began to experience command problems, and he learned that Blunt was about to turn his left flank. The Confederate retreat began, and although Cooper fought a rearguard action, many of those troops counterattacked, failed, and fled. Any possibility of the Confederates taking Fort Gibson was gone. Following this battle, Union forces controlled Indian Territory, north of the Arkansas River.

Result(s): Union victory

Battle of Middle Boggy Depot  

Other Names: Middle Boggy

Location: Unknown

Date(s): February 13, 1864

Commanders: Maj. Charles Willette [US]; Lt. Col. John Jumper [CS]

Forces Engaged: Three companies of the 14th Kansas Cavalry Regiment and a section of Howitzers [US]; Seminole Battalion, Company A, 1st Choctaw and Chickasaw Cavalry Regiment, and a detachment of 20th Texas Regiment [CS]

Estimated Casualties: Unknown

Description: While on an expedition in February 1864 to meet, defeat or destroy Confederate forces in Indian Territory, Union Maj. Charles Willette and his troops surprised a Confederate force at Middle Boggy Depot on February 13. Although poorly armed, the Rebels made a determined stand for a half hour before retiring.  The Union forces killed 47 Confederates during this short fight.  Fear of the arrival of fresh Confederate forces influenced the Federals to retire to Fort Gibson. During Col. John F. Phillipss Indian Territory expedition, he and his men fought with and dispersed numerous Confederate forces. Middle Boggy Depot was, perhaps, the largest encounter during the expedition.

Result(s): Union victory

Battle of Old Fort Wayne  

Other Names: Beatties Prairie, Beatys Prairie

Location: Delaware County

Date(s): October 22, 1862

Commanders: Brig. Gen. James G. Blunt [US]; Col. Douglas H. Cooper [CS]

Forces Engaged: 1st Division, Army of the Frontier [US]; 1st Brigade [CS]

Estimated Casualties: 164 total (US 14; CS 150)

Description: Brig. Gen. James G. Blunt and his troops attacked Col. Douglas H. Cooper and his Confederate command on Beatties Prairie near Old Fort Wayne at 7:00 am on October 22, 1862. The Confederates put up stiff resistance for a half hour, but overwhelming numbers forced them to retire from the field in haste, leaving artillery and equipage behind. This was a setback in the 1862 Confederate offensive that extended from the tidewater in the east to the plains of the Indian Territory of the west.

Result(s): Union victory

Battle of Round Mountain   

Other Names: Round Mountains

Location: Unknown

Date(s): November 19, 1861

Commanders: Chief Opothleyahola [I]; Col. Douglas H. Cooper [CS]

Forces Engaged: Creek and Seminole [I]; Indian Department [CS]

Estimated Casualties: Unknown

Description: Col. Douglas H. Cooper, Confederate commander of the Indian Department, had not been able to reconcile differences with Chief Opothleyahola, who commanded a band of Unionist Creeks and Seminoles. Cooper set out on November 15, 1861, with about 1,400 men to  either compel submission . . . or drive him and his party from the country.  His force rode up the Deep Fork of the Canadian River towards Chief Opothleyaholas camp which they found deserted. On the 19th, Cooper learned from captured prisoners that part of Chief Opothleyaholas band was at the Red Fork of the Arkansas River, where they were erecting a fort. Coopers men arrived there around 4:00 pm and ordered a cavalry charge which discovered that Chief Opothleyaholas band had recently abandoned the camp. The Confederates did find some stragglers beyond the camp and followed them, blundering into Chief Opothleyaholas camp. The Federals fired into the Rebel cavalry and, in large force, came out to attack them. They chased the Confederates back to Coopers main force. Darkness prevented Cooper from attacking until the main enemy force was within 60 yards. A short fight ensued but Chief Opothleyaholas men broke it off and retreated back to their camp. Cooper set out for Chief Opothleyaholas camp the next morning but found it gone. The Confederates claimed victory because Chief Opothleyahola had left the area. This was the first of three encounters between Chief Opothleyaholas Union bands and Confederate troops. The chief was forced to flee Oklahoma for Kansas at the end of the year.

Result(s): Confederate victory