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Dictionary of Wisconsin History

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Term: Perryville, Battle of


Date(s): October 8, 1862
Location: Perryville, Kentucky (Google Map)
Other name(s): Chaplin Hills
Campaign: Confederate Heartland Offensive (June-October 1862)
Outcome: Union victory


The Union victory at Perryville on October 8, 1862, gave it control over Kentucky, a critical border state, for the remainder of the war.

During the summer of 1862, Confederate troops invaded neutral Kentucky to obtain supplies and claim the state for the Confederacy. Union leaders then raced across the border from Tennessee to stop them. The two sides met in the Chaplin Hills, west of the small town of Perryville, Kentucky, on October 8, 1862.

Perryville is considered one of the bloodiest battles of the war. The Union fielded approximately 37,000 troops and the Confederates only about 17,000. After two days of brutal combat, the Confederates retreated. The Union controlled Kentucky for the rest of the war. More than 7,500 men were killed, wounded, or taken prisoner.

Wisconsin’s Role

Wisconsin's 1st, 10th, 15th, 21st and 24th Wisconsin Infantry regiments and 3rd, 5th and 8th Wisconsin Light Artillery batteries took part.

The 1st Wisconsin Infantry was under fire much of the day and repulsed several Confederate charges. Fighting nearby was the 21st Wisconsin Infantry. It had been newly recruited with only four days of training. About 179 of its men were killed, wounded or missing. The 10th Wisconsin Infantry fought from mid-morning until nightfall. When their ammunition ran out, they replenished it by lifting the cartridge boxes off the dead and wounded. Of the artillery present, only the 5th Wisconsin Light Artillery battery was engaged in combat. The 3rd and 8th batteries were held in reserve.

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View original documents

[Source: Report on the Nation’s Civil War Battlefields (Washington, 1993); Estabrook, C. Records and Sketches of Military Organizations (Madison, 1914); Love, W. Wisconsin in the War of the Rebellion (Madison, 1866).]

115 records found

Packing-the-rigging (logging)
Packs (logging)
paczki (food)
pad (farming)
paddock (farming)
Pail and Shovel Party
Paleoindian culture (archaeology)
panary (farming)
Panic of 1837
pantograph (railroads)
paper industry in Wisconsin
Paramount records
parfleche (Fr.)
Parkman Club
parole (military)
parterre (farming)
pastern (farming)
pasteurization (dairy)
pays d'en haut (Fr.)
Pearl Fishing
Pearl-diver (logging)
Peavey (logging)
peavey (logging)
Peckatonica River
pelleterie (Fr.)
per diem (railroads)
perche (Fr.)
period revival (architecture)
Perryville, Battle of
Peshtigo Fire
Petersburg, Siege of
Petrified Man Hoax
Pewit's Nest
Phoenix (shipwreck, 1847)
piastre (Fr.)
Piastre (Fr.)
Picture(d) Rocks, Michigan
Pie-fork (logging)
piece (Fr.)
pied (Fr.)
Pike Creek
Pike-pole (logging)
pillage (Civil War)
pilothouse (maritime)
Pine Bend
pinte (Fr.)
pirogue (Fr.)
pistole (Fr.)
piston (railroads)
plank road
plants, native
plate (maritime)
Platoon (Civil War)
pledget (farming)
plomb (Fr.)
Plumb Plan
plunder (Civil War)
plus (Fr.)
Pokelogan (logging)
Pole-ax (logging)
Political Equality League
pollard (farming)
pontoon (Civil War)
pony boiler (maritime)
Poor-box (logging)
population of Wisconsin, 1820-1990
port (maritime)
Port Gibson, Battle of
Port Hudson, Siege of
Portage City Guards (Civil War)
pot (Fr.)
Potosi Badgers (Civil War)
Potter Law (1874)
pottery and earthenware industry in Wisconsin
pouce (Fr.)
Prairie du Chien, Battle of (1814)
Prairie Grove, Battle of
Prairie School (architecture)
Pre-exemption Law (1841)
Presidential Visits to Madison
primary elections in Wisconsin
primary rocks (mining)
prisons in Wisconsin
private (Civil War)
Prize-logs (logging)
probang (farming)
Progressive Movement
Project Sanguine
Puan, Puans, Puants
puddingstone (mining)
Punk (logging)
put about (maritime)
pyrites (mining)

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