Diary of Orrin Brown—Feb 11, 1865

Battle of Aiken Reenactors (c) City of Aiken, SCDiary of Orrin Brown, Barnwell, South Carolina

Saturday–Feb. 11th

We were on the road about 6 AM and marched very fast till about 9 AM. We haulted then for the 1st & 3rd Divi. trains to pass. We fell in again at 1 PM and marched about 3 miles to the vilage of Barnwell where our regt. went on Provost guard at about 3 PM. The most of the town was burned before we got there. The day has been cool with a west wind. Read 6 Chapts. in Testament today.

After burning Barnwell, Kilpatrick’s Union Cavalry turned north west in feint on Augusta, Georgia, where he met Wheeler and his Rebel Cavalry in the Battle of Aiken.  Ever rash, Kilpatrick was drawn into a trap, in which Confederate horsemen, appearing thin and drawn out, lured the Yankees into the town of Aiken.  Kill-cavalry’s luck held, tho, when skittish Alabama troops opened fire early, allowing battle to break out before the Union troops were encircled.  After a spirited fight considered a Confederate victory, the Union Cavalry fell back to defensive positions of the day before.  The two sides skirmished another day before moving out towards the rest of Sherman’s troops marching on Columbia.

The community of Aiken, South Carolina, hosts a Reenactment each year.  The 2015 festivities area scheduled for 20-22 February.  Even at $10 a head it sounds like a good old time, Blue or Gray.  Long video below (almost an hour) of last year’s program:



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