Sunday, January 29, 2017

THE BATTLE OF OLUSTEE

I'm doing a little research in contemplation of writing a book about lawyer-generals in the Civil War. When the war broke out, there were only four generals in the U.S. Army, but there were hundreds of generals on both sides by the time it was over. Where did they come from? The largest number of generals came from a military background. By one historian's count, there were 194 professional soldiers serving as generals for the Union and 125 for the Confederacy. That left a lot of amateurs to fill out the number needed. The second largest number of generals came from the ranks of practicing lawyers. There were 126 "attorney generals" serving Union and 129 serving the Confederacy. 

As I was researching to determine how the "attorney generals" performed in combat, I came across dual account of the Battle of Olustee written by two generals, one Confederate and one Union. Since the Battle of Olustee Festival is drawing near, I thought I would share the story of the battle. This account comes from  Volume 4 of the 1888 work, Battles and Leaders of the Civil War, pages 78-80. First, the account of Major-General Samuel Jones, C.S.A,:





And now for the version of Joseph R. Hawley, Brevet Major-General, U.S.V.: