March 14, 1865: Battle of Newton

March 14, 1865
Battle of Newton

The Battle of Newton was a minor skirmish that took place in the small town of Newton, Alabama, on 14 March 1865, during the final days of the U.S. Civil War. It was fought between local Home Guard troops and elements of the 1st Florida Cavalry (US), who had invaded the Wiregrass region of Alabama. This operation had not been approved by Brigadier General Alexander Asboth, commanding Union forces in Pensacola, Florida, and was in fact a violation of Ashboth’s operational order.

The Federals were led by Second Lieutenant Joseph Sanders, a former captain in the Confederate Army who had switched sides and joined the Union Army.[1] The Floridians intended to burn the Dale County courthouse, which was then located in Newton, just as other Union irregulars had done in nearby counties. However, their movement toward the town was detected by local citizens, and they were ambushed and routed on the town square by the home guard before they could do any damage. Sanders reported three dead and five wounded, while no casualties were reported among the home guard troops.

Source: Wikipedia contributors, “Battle of Newton,” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia,

Editor: Newton is a town in Dale County Alabama. At the 2010 census its population was 1,511. Once the county seat of Dale County, Newton lost this distinction to nearby Ozark in 1870, and is now a small farming community. It incorporated in 1887.

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