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This week in the Civil War

Fighting in Arkansas

This week 150 years ago in the Civil War, Confederate forces battle Union rivals at Cane Hill in the far northwest corner of Arkansas.

The fighting on Nov. 28, 1862, began with Union Gen. James Blunt sending out probing forces in a bid to destroy Confederate cavalry units detected in the area. The Union contingent caught up with a Confederate force that fought a delaying action while trying to protect its supply trains.

Confederates under Col. Joe Shelby set up defensive positions around the Cane Hill cemetery. During a series of clashes, the Confederates withdrew under a fierce Union onslaught. Finally running short of ammunition, Confederate fighters withdrew and nightfall brought an end to the day’s fighting.

Blunt’s forces thus took control of the Boston Mountains in that extreme corner of Arkansas.

It was a small-scale fight. But days later, a far bigger battle would be waged at Prairie Grove, Ark., culminating in Union forces consolidating their grip on the region.

– Associated Press

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