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The Battle of Buckland Mills

October 19, 1863 in Fauquier County, Virginia
Bristoe Campaign

Union Forces Commanded by:
Maj. Gen. J. Kilpatrick
Forces Killed Wounded Captured
- 20 60 100*

Confederate Forces Commanded by:
Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart
Forces Killed Wounded Captured
- 10 40 -

**Missing and Captured
Conclusion: Confederate Victory


Cavalry operations during the Bristoe Campaign were generalyy confined to the traditional role prescribed for the mounted arm. Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart's 2 divisions of cavalry screened the Confederate infantry, demonstrated against Union forces, and probed for weaknesses. As the Federals retreated before the Confederate flanking movement, Maj. Gen. Alfred Pleasonton's troopers shielded the rear, protecting wagons and infantry columns.
For 8 days, as the armies moved north toward Washington, Stuart and Pleasonton dueled inconclusively. TRhe Confederates often dashed on Union detachments, creating the impression of a full scale attack. The Federatls usually counterattacked and brief, running gunfights ensued. On October 11th, near their old battleground of Brandy Station, the 2 antagonists fought furiously for some time without any resolution. Two days later, Stuart was caught between wings of the Union army, eluding capture by concealing his division in a ltlle valley. From the 14-17th, Stuart harassed the still-retreating Federals.
When Gen. Robert E. Lee abandoned his advance on Bristoe Station on the 17th, after Lt. Gen. Ambrose P. Hill's defeat, Stuart, personally commanding Maj. Gen. Wade Hampton's division, retreated through Gainesville and haymarket. His other division, under Maj. Gen, Fitzhugh Lee, withdrew via Manassas Junction and Bristoe Station. On the evening of the 18th, Stuart, vigorously attacked by some of Pleasonton's troopers, fell back to the south bank of Broad Run at Buckland, a good position to defend while waiting for Fitzhugh Lee's arrival.
The next morning, the Union cavalry, Brig. Gen. H. Judson Kilpatrick's division, advanced on Stuart, but the Confederates repulsed the feeble demonstrations. A courier from Fitzhugh Lee told Stuart that the former division was enroute and, if Stuart lured the Federals south, Lee would attack their flank.
Stuart immediately withdrew to Chestnut Hill, about 2.5 miles northeast of Warrenton. Deploying his troops behind the crest, Stuart waited. Kilpatrick's men soon approached, marching to within 200 yards of the crest. Suddenly, a lone cannon boomed, the prearranged signal of Fitzhugh Lee's arrival.
From flank and front, Confederate cavalry galloped from concealment. Kilpatrick's startled troopers abruptly drew rein and immediately fled in confusion. For 5 miles across the open country, the Confederates chased the Federals, capturing over 150 of them. The "Buckland Races", thought some Confederates, were like a glorious foxhunt. The last significant encounter in the Bristoe Campaign was a minor affair but pleased Stuart immensely.
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