April 30, 1863: Battle of Crooked Creek

April 30, 1863
Battle of Crooked Creek

Alabama Civil War Map of Battles

Alabama Civil War Map of Battles

After repulsing Forrests attack at Day’s Gap in the early morning hours Streight’s “Mule Brigade” continued south about 6 miles until reaching Crooked Creek. At Crooked Creek Forrest’s Cavalry again engaged the rear guards of the Federal column. Thus began a running series of skirmishes and engagements at Crooked Creek (April 30), Hog Mountain (April 30), Blountsville (May 1), Black Creek/Gadsden (May 2), and Blount’s Plantation (May 2).

From Col. Streight’s Report:

“It was now about 11 o’clock, fighting having continued since about 6 o’clock in the morning. I had learned, in the mean time, that the enemy were in heavy force, fully three times our number, with twelve pieces of artillery, under General Forrest in person; consequently I was fearful that they were making an effort to get around us and attack in the rear of our position; hence I decided to resume the march. Everything was soon in readiness, and we moved out, leaving a strong guard (dismounted) in the rear, to check any immediate advance the enemy might make previous to the column getting in motion.”

“We were not too soon in our movements, for the column had hardly passed a cross-road, some 6 miles from our first battle-ground, when the enemy were discovered advancing on our left. Sharp skirmishing commenced at Crooked Creek, which is about 10 miles south of Day’s Gap, and finally the enemy pressed our rear so hard that I was compelled to prepare for battle.”

Streight had both more men and cannon than did Forrest, but he didnt know that at the time. Streight moved away from the creek towards the high ground, a mile away at Hog Mountain after crossing the creek. The 1st Alabama Cavalry (US) held Forrest in check at the creek as the Federal train moved up the mountain.

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