Battle of Ball's Bluff - Union Soldiers Captured
The Battle of Ball's Bluff, also known as the Battle of Harrison’s Island or the Battle of Leesburg, was fought on October 21, 1861, in Loudoun County, Virginia, as part of Union Maj.
Gen. George B. McClellan's operations in Northern Virginia during the American Civil War.
While a minor engagement in comparison with the battles that would take place in years to follow, it was the second largest battle of the Eastern Theater in 1861, and in its aftermath had repercussions in the Union Army's chain of command structure and raised separation of powers issues under the United States Constitution during the war.
AFTER the first battle of Manassas, Col. Eppa Hunton had been ordered to reoccupy Leesburg with his regiment, the Eighth Virginia; a little later Col. William Barksdale's Thirteenth Mississippi, Col. W. S. Featherston's Seventeenth Mississippi, a battery, and four companies of cavalry under Col. W. H. Jenifer, were sent to the same place, and these were organized into the Seventh brigade of the Confederate army of the Potomac, which, early in August, was put under command of Brig.-Gen. Nathan G. Evans, who had been promoted for his brave conduct July 21st. General Beauregard's object in locating this strong force at Leesburg was to guard his left flank from a Federal attack by way of several good roads that led from the fords of the upper Potomac, near that town, directly to his Bull run encampment; to watch the large Federal force that McClellan had located on the opposite side of the Potomac; to keep up a connection with the Confederate force in the lower Shenandoah valley by a good turnpike that led from Leesburg across the Blue ridge, and to save for his army the abundant supplies of the fertile county of Loudoun.