From Antietam to Chancellorsville: September 1862 to May 1863

Battle of Antietam

What is meant by “The Cornfield”?

Those men, on either side, who fought in numerous battles became very used to the presence of corn fields. This was true whether they fought in Virginia, Maryland, Kentucky, or Tennessee. What they—and we—call “The Cornfield” is a very specific thirty-acre area that was contested throughout the morning of September 17, 1862. The fighting was so intense that Hooker’s corps, as well as Stonewall Jackson’s brigade, were practically ruined. Hooker later surveyed the area and declared that the bodies were heaped on top of one another.


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