Camden Expedition: April 13, 1864

Prairie D’Ane, Ark.

Confederate Commander Price learned of Steele’s move to Camden on April 13th and returned to Prairie D’Ane with Gano’s Texas Brigade, Walker’s Choctaw Brigade and Dockery’s Brigade. Price’s plan was to attack Steele’s rear guard. He also sent Confederate Jo Shelby’s Brigade and Confederate Cabell’s Brigade to parallel the Union column and to get between Steele’s column and the town of Camden.

At about 1:00PM, Confederate General Price committed Dockery’s Brigade of 400 troopers to attack the Union rear guard leaving Prairie D’Ane. Dockery’s men slammed into the 1st Brigade of the Frontier Division. The Confederates pushed the Union soldiers back and captured a section of artillery. The Union supply train was open for ravaging, and Dockery’s men rushed forward. However, Union Col. Edwards rallied his 18th Iowa and kept the Confederates from advancing. The Iowans were soon joined by the 1st Arkansas (US) and the 1st Kansas Colored Infantry, whose added muskets help stabilize the situation. More of the Union Frontier Division troops joined in the fight, including the 2nd Indiana Battery which fired over 2000 rounds during the encounter. The Confederates commenced a withdrawal. Confederate General Price committed Walker’s Choctaw Brigade, but Thayer’s Union battery halted their attack.1st Kansas colored

Thayer continued to push the Confederates four or five miles across the prairie.
The Confederates finally withdrew and Union General Thayer recalled his pursuing units. His Division and the supply train marched all night to rejoin the
main Union column in route to Camden, AR.

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About Civil War Reflections

Vernon has been a Civil War buff since childhood, but had been inactive in Civil War history for over two decades. However, in the early 1990s his interest was rekindled after watching Ken Burns’ “Civil War Documentary” on PBS. He particularly became interested in the Battle of Antietam (Sharpsburg) and decided to learn more about this epic struggle.
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