County: Shenandoah, VA
General Location: Valley Pike (US11) at Tom's Brook and Jordon Run, I-81, Back Road (rte. 623) at Tom's Brook.
Size of Study/Core Areas: 6,644/2,018 acres
GIS Integrity of Study/Core Areas: 83/83 percent; Good/Good
Field Assessment of Study Area Integrity: Fair
USGS Quadrants: Tom's Brook, Woodstock
Select to view a summary of 1991 LAND USE / LAND COVER
Campaign: Sheridan's Valley Campaign
Principal Commanders: [c] Maj. Gen. Thomas Rosser, Maj. Gen. Lunsford Lomax; [u] Brig. Gen. Alfred Torbert
Forces Engaged: [c] Two cavalry divisions (Rosser and Lomax) about 3,500; [u] Two cavalry divisions (Wesley Merritt and George A. Custer), about 6,300
Casualties: [c] 350 (20k/50w/280m&c); [u] 57 (10k/47w)
Significance: Tom's Brook was a battle of strategy and maneuver that pitted cavalry against cavalry. The CS cavalry were eager for revenge against the US cavalry, which had been burning barns and mills in the Valley for the previous week. On 9 October 1864, however, Sheridan ordered his cavalry to ``whip'' the enemy or get whipped themselves. In the resulting conflict, the US troopers routed the CS cavalry, impairing its morale and efficiency for the remainder of the campaign. The CS flight was referred to by Valley residents and victorious Union troopers as the ``Woodstock Races.'' The fighting on the Back Road at Spiker's Hill pitted two former West Point roommates against one another--Tom Rosser and George Armstrong Custer. Maj. Gen. Philip H. Sheridan watched the battle unfold, reputedly from the summit of Round Hill.
Description of the Battle
Phase One. Disposition of Forces: On 8 October 1864, the Confederate Cavalry under overall command of Maj. Gen. Thomas Rosser harried the withdrawing US cavalry on the Valley Pike and the Back Road, fighting a brisk skirmish along Tom's Brook near the Back Road. The CS cavalry were enraged by the destruction of the Valley they had witnessed in the last week and were ...