Minnesota at the Crossroads: Battle of Antietam

Teaching with Curated Collections

Minnesota at the Crossroads: Battle of Antietam

There was much at stake for the Union and Confederate forces at the Battle of Antietam. Several members of the First Minnesota Regiment recorded accounts of this decisive battle, which took place on September 17, 1862.

The memoir of Civil War solider James Wright, No More Gallant a Deed, is a thorough record of the First Minnesota. In the aftermath of Antietam, the regiment was on burial detail for three days. On Sunday, September 21, Episcopal Bishop Henry Whipple visited with and preached to the regiment. The bishop had traveled to Washington, D.C., to discuss with President Lincoln the U.S.-Dakota War raging in Minnesota.

For Minnesotans, the news of Antietam and Lincoln’s preliminary Emancipation Proclamation arrived a day before news of the Battle of Wood Lake, which marked the end of the U.S.-Dakota War.

(Running time 6:13)

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