The Battle of Seven Pines Historical Marker
Map depicting battle plans for the Battle of Seven Pines
The Marker for the battle of Seven Pines
This is a real-time photo of Prof. Lowe ascending onboard the Intrepid during the battle.
This Currier and Ives depiction of the battle was printed soon after the battle.
CSA General Joseph Johnston
Village of Fair Oaks following the battle. These buildings were surrounded by UNion fortifications that faced a number of massive assaults launched by the Confederate Army.
This sketch, done during the battle, depicts General Franklin of the Union army and his VI (6th) Corps retreating in the face of massive assaults.
Union artillery near Seven Pines prior to the battle
Backstory and Context
Johnston's assault was not well coordinated but it succeeded in driving back the IV Corps under Gen. Erasmus Keyes; though it resulted in Johnston being critically wounded. The Federal corps had heavy casualties and were reinforced by the III Corps as Sedgwick’s division crossed the river on grapevine bridges. The federal position was finally stable enough to push back the Rebel assault.
As the battle raged, the newly formed Union Army Balloon Corps would be used for the first time. Commanded by Prof. Thaddeus S.C. Lowe, the balloon corps was critical in relaying time-sensitive information to General McClellan regarding the movements of the Confederate Army. Two were used, the Washington and Intrepid. Even with this new technology and intelligence gathering-corps, McClellan would still underestimate Johnston's replacement, Lee.
The result of the battle was inconclusive. Both sides claimed victory. The aftermath of battle had two important consequences. McClellan was horrified by the sight of dead men especially his; this led him to be more cautious in battle. These decisions by McClellan would eventually doom the campaign pushing in on the Rebels capital of Richmond. The other result of the battle was the rise to power of Robert E. Lee. Johnston was wounded at the battle resulting in the Confederates replacement with Robert E. Lee who had been serving as President Davis military advisor. This replacement by Lee would prove critical for the Confederate Army for the rest of the war.
Battle of Seven Pines. World History Project. . Accessed March 01, 2019. https://worldhistoryproject.org/1862/5/31/battle-of-seven-pines.