Devastating battles at the Wilderness, Spotsylvania and Yellow Tavern in the spring, had further depleted the Southern ranks of countless brave soldiers and even more of its finest officers.
As General Lee began his movement towards the trenches of Petersburg, he decided to make one last ditch effort to go on the offensive and send a large portion of his remaining troops to protect Lynchburg from federals under General David Hunter and move north down the Shenandoah Valley. But who to send? The list of remaining officers to command such an expedition was drastically reduced due to the high casualties, illness, and lack of sufficient rank that General Jubal Early was the defacto choice with the remnants of his
Early's men chased off Hunter and continued unopposed down the valley towards Winchester and ultimately Harpers ferry. Things were looking quite good for the overall strategy of possibly putting enough pressure on
Washington D.C. that Grant would have to release his stranglehold on Lee. Optimism began to fade though as General Phillip Sheridan and his infamous Army of the Shenandoah began to pursue Early.
Prior to the well known battle of Cedar Creek fortunes could have changed for the Confederacy. A series of skirmishes and battles in late August and early September set the stage for the last large open field
battle of the war in the eastern theater at Middletown Virginia.
JOIN US ON SEPTEMBER 6-7 AT BEAVER CREEK STATE PARK as we present the150th Anniversary of
The Battle of Opequon Creek Virginia.
The Opequon meanders between Winchester and Berryville just west of the Shenandoah River and Blue Ridge Mountains. Here in early September 1864 Sheridan's Army of the Shenandoah squared off with Early's corps of the Army of Northern Virginia. The resulting back and forth struggle influenced Early's strategy that ultimately led to a crushing defeat at Cedar Creek in October sealing the Confederacy's fate in the War Between the States.
Relive history 150 years later as the lives and actions of soldiers and civilians are reenacted at the beautiful Beaver Creek State park which bears a great resemblance to its historic counterpart in Virginia. Observe up close and personal the social, political, personal, and military lives of those who lived in those devastating
times in our countries history.