Antietam, MD

 

Date(s): September 16-18, 1862

Location: Please click on link below for map.

Antietam National Battlefield (national battlefield), Maryland, United States

Campaign: Maryland Campaign [September 1862]  

Battles in Campaign:

Situation:

Commanders:

  • Union: Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan

  • Confederate: Gen. Robert E. Lee

Principal Forces:

  • Union: 75,000

  • Confederate: Army of Northern Virginia [18,000]

Description:

  • On September 16, Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan confronted Leeís Army of Northern Virginia at Sharpsburg, Maryland.

  • At dawn September 17, Hookerís corps mounted a powerful assault on Leeís left flank that began the single bloodiest day in American military history.

  • Attacks and counterattacks swept across Millerís cornfield and fighting swirled around the Dunker Church.

  • Union assaults against the Sunken Road eventually pierced the Confederate center, but the Federal advantage was not followed up.

  • Late in the day, Burnsideís corps finally got into action, crossing the stone bridge over Antietam Creek and rolling up the Confederate right.

  • At a crucial moment, A. P. Hillís division arrived from Harpers Ferry and counterattacked, driving back Burnside and saving the day.

  • Although outnumbered two-to-one, Lee committed his entire force, while McClellan sent in less than three-quarters of his army, enabling Lee to fight the Federals to a standstill.

  • During the night, both armies consolidated their lines. In spite of crippling casualties, Lee continued to skirmish with McClellan throughout the 18th, while removing his wounded south of the river.

  • McClellan did not renew the attacks and after dark, Lee ordered the battered Army of Northern Virginia to withdraw across the Potomac into the Shenandoah Valley.

Photo Gallery:2

Antietam National Battlefield - Visitor Center

Antietam National Battlefield - Visitor Center

Antietam National Battlefield Tour Map

Union and Confederate Uniforms

Rifles and Bayonets

Presentation Sword Belonging to Gen. George McClellan

Witness to the Battle - James Hope

Dunker Church - "Symbol of Peace and Brotherhood"

Tour Stop 1

Dunker Church

Dunker Church

The State of Maryland Monument

The State of Maryland Monument

Relief of Actions Showing Maryland Units at Antietam

The State of Maryland Monument

Relief of Actions Showing Maryland Units at Antietam

The State of Maryland Monument

Relief of Actions Showing Maryland Units at Antietam

The State of Maryland Monument

Relief of Actions Showing Maryland Units at Antietam

The State of Maryland Monument

Relief of Actions Showing Maryland Units at Antietam

The State of Maryland Monument

Clara Barton Monument

Tour Stop 2 - North Woods

Seventh Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry Monument

Joseph Poffenberger Farm

"The Battle Opened"

Tour Stop 3

4th Regiment Pennsylvania Reserve Volunteer Corps Monument

North Woods

Marker Describing Actions of William's Division Twelth Union Army Corp

12th Pennsylvania Cavalry Monument

Mansfield Monument

Mansfield Monument Road

East Woods

Tour Stop 3

Union General Mansfield Monument

Union Encampment

Tour Stop 3

Tour Stop 4

The Bloody Cornfield

"With Flags Flying"

Tour Stop 4

"The Jaws of Death"

Tour Stop 5

Tour Stop 5 - West Woods

Tour Stop 5 - West Woods

"We May Never Meet Again"

Tour Stop 5 - West Woods

West Woods

Tour Stop 5 - West Woods

"The End of the Confederacy was in Sight"

Tour Stop 8

Monument to 132 Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry

Tour Stop 8

Sunken Road

Tour Stop 8

For nearly 4 hours, Union and Confederate infantry contested this sunken country road, resulting in over 5,000 casualties

Roulette Farm

Tour Stop 8

Monument to Pennsylvania Infantry

Tour Stop 8

Tour Stop 8

Jackson's Command - Bodes' Brigade

Tour Stop 8

Roulette Farm

Tour Stop 8

Irish Brigade Monument

Sunken Road Observation Tower

View of the Sunken Road and Roulette Farm from Observation Tower

View of the Sunken Road and Roulette Farm from Observation Tower

View of Roulette Farmhouse from Observation Tower

Stairs Inside Observation Tower

Approaching Lower Bridge (Burnside's Bridge) over Antietam Creek

Confederate Positions on West Side of Antietam Creek

Description of Actions by Georgia Units at Burnside's Bridge

Fifty-First New York Infantry Monument

View from Burnside's Bridge

Union Position at Burnside's Bridge

Tour Stop 9

Union Position at Burnside's Bridge

Tour Stop 9

"Will You Give Us Our Whiskey?"

Tour Stop 9

51st Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry

Tour Stop 9

View of Antietam Creek from Burnside's Bridge

Confederate position at Burnside's Bridge held by Georgia Units

William McKinley Monument on Georgians Overlook

Positions Held by Georgia Units in Defense of Lower Bridge

Georgians Overlook

View from Georgians Overlook

"Destroy the Rebel Army"

"I Hate Cannons"

Twentieth Regiment New York Volunteer Infantry Monument

20th New York Infantry Monument

State of New York Memorial

State of New York Memorial

 

Classification3: A

Casualties4:

  • Union: 12,400

  • Confederate: 10,320

Results: Union Victory

Battlefield Websites:

Lodging and Restaurants: Maryland Tourism

Recommended Resources:


1 National Park Service summary.

2 Please click on the image to enlarge it. You may copy the images if you include the following note and link with each image: "Courtesy of civil-war-journeys.org."

3 Classification:

  • A - having a decisive influence on a campaign and a direct impact on the course of the war

  • B - having a direct and decisive influence on their campaign

  • C - having observable influence on the outcome of a campaign

  • D - having a limited influence on the outcome of their campaign or operation but achieving or affecting important local objectives

4 Casualties are someone killed, injured, wounded, captured or missing.

Revised 07/18/2013