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CASE HISTORICAL MUSEUM

PENINSULAR CAMPAIGN - GAINES MILL

June 27, 1862

To rebuild the Union army shattered at Bull Rub, Lincoln, in late July 1861, called on Major General George B. McClellan.  He spent the next eight months organizing and training the new Union army.  The sometime called "The Young Napoleon", came up with a new plan, to take the army by ship to the Peninsula.  Then to move up the Peninsula, from there he would move westward to Richmond.

The Union army arrived at Ft. Monroe, at the tip of the Peninsula, in late March 1862.  The Unionarmy moved up the Peninsula at a slow pace reaching sight of Richmond by May 31, 1862.  On that day they were hit by the Confederates at "The Battle of Seven Pines:.  The two-day battle ended in a bloody stalemate.  The wounded Confederate commander was replaced by Rober E. Lee.  General Lee reorganized the battered Rebal army and added Stonewall Jack's force.  On June 26, 1862 Lee sparked the first major fight of what came to be called "The Seven Day's Battles".

   On June 27, 1862 at 2:00 p.m., Lee attacked Fitz-John Porter's Federal V Corps at a grissmill called "Gaines Mill"  both sides took and gave ground.  About 7:00 p.m.,, the Confederates, 56,000 strong, attacked all along the line.

Gaines Mill, Virginia
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June 27, 1862

The decisive moment of the battle came when Confederate Brigadier General John Bell Hood leading the 4th Texas Regiment broke through and routed the Union Center, forcing the Union army to withdraw across the Chickahominy River during the night.

   On July 1, after more numerous battles, both sides girded for a climactic battle at Malvern Hill.  The Federals formed up along the northern rim of the 100-foot-high-hill, with infantry and 250 guns.
  Lee attacked shortly after 4:00 p.m., on July 1, 1862 wave after Rebel Wave attacked only to be mowed down by the storm of Federal Artillery.

   Not until nearly 9:00 p.m., did the Confederates give up their futile assaults.  By then 5,000 casualties had been added to the 15,000 Lee had lost since June 26.
   A nervous McClellan pulled back the Union army to Harrison's Landing wher it set for six weeks before being withdrawn from the Peninsula.

The "Seven Day's Battles" had cost the Federals nearly 16,000 men and after his forword units stood only six miles from Richmond, ended any chance for a quick capture of the Confederate capital.