GENERAL RUSSELL HASTINGS' MAP
OF THE BATTLE OF OPEQUAN CREEK
General Russell Hastings was born in Greenfield, Massachusetts,
in 1835. With his family he moved to northern Ohio, settling on a farm near
Willoughby in 1849. At the outbreak of the Civil War, Hastings was the second to
enlist from Willoughby, and by ballot, was made second lieutenant of Company K
of the 23rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry. While serving in the 23rd Ohio, Hastings
served as Rutherford B. Hayes' aide-de-camp. He was severely wounded in the knee
during the Battle of Opequan Creek (Third Battle of Winchester) on September 19,
At war's end Hastings was elected to the Ohio legislature from
Lake County. President Andrew Johnson appointed him U. S. Marshal for the
Northern District of Ohio in 1867. In 1872, General Hastings married Mary Adele
Humphrey of Saline, Michigan. She died April 30, 1874. His second marriage was
to Emily Platt, the niece of President Rutherford B. Hayes. The couple was
married in a White House ceremony on June 19, 1878. They later moved to Bermuda
where they built their home, "Soncy" near Saline Bay. The Hastings were the
parents of three daughters.
1899, Hastings began writing his recollections of his Civil War service.
Hastings Collection, Hayes-25). Three battle maps accompanied his
Civil War memoir. At the left is Hastings' map of the Battle of Opequan Creek.
Click on the map for enlargement (691 x 1080)
Battle of Opequan Creek by General Russell
BATTLE OF OPEQUAN CREEK
Sheridan's objective was to destroy Confederate General Jubal
Early's II Corps. He advanced 35,000 troops across Opequan Creek east of
Winchester. The advance was slowed considerably as the troops threaded their way
through a narrow canyon. The delay allowed Early time to regroup his forces.
Confederate General John B. Gordon's and Robert E. Rodes' troops inflicted heavy
casualties on Sheridan's XIX Corps. Sheridan saved his army by launching a
counterattack with his reserve division.
Sheridan then advanced his III Corps under General George
Crook. Crook marched his lone division beyond Early's left flank. The
Confederates fought ferociously, but two Union cavalry divisions soon joined the
fight from the north. When Sheridan's infantry renewed its attacks, the Rebels
retreated. Sheridan lost 5,000 troops; Early's 12,000-man force was reduced by