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Petersburg Campaign Project

Go to Beyond the Crater’s Petersburg Order of Battle (OOB) Page

This is a landing page for anyone who is interested in information from my old “Petersburg Campaign Project” at TOCWOC – A Civil War Blog.  What you are looking at is an exact replica of that page, except that the links have now been updated to lead you into Beyond The Crater: The Petersburg Campaign OnlineBeyond the Crater is essentially a GREATLY expanded version of the Petersburg Campaign Project.  We hope you’ll learn quite a bit about the Petersburg Campaign while we do the same with each new post!

The Petersburg Campaign Project

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Back to Brett’s Regimental Level Orders of Battle

Project Goal:

The goal of my Petersburg Campaign Project is to try to create a set of Excel Spreadsheets which will document the Order of Battle for the Union and Confederate Armies for each of the Nine Offensives during the Petersburg Campaign of June 15, 1864-April 2, 1865. These OOBs will be down to the regimental level, and I hope to include unit armament (i.e. which weapons each unit carried, examples include Springfield Rifle Musket, Enfield Rifled Musket, Smoothbore, Henry Repeater, etc.), muster in date, muster out date, various ways to measure unit quality (on a scale of A-E, with A being the best and E the worst), and most importantly, the strength of each regiment. I know going in that there are many cases where regimental strengths cannot be found. I will attempt to estimate these using various sources.

Reason for Project:

There are a few reasons I wish to do this:

1) I have always been interested in unit strengths down to the Regimental Level. In many cases, authors neglect this information, when for a lot of people this would add immensely to their understanding of the struggle. When someone says two Confederate Divisions drove away two Union Corps, that does not tell me much. When you come to find out later that a Confederate Division is usually larger than its Union counterpart at this stage of the war, the perception changes.

2) The Battle and ensuing Siege of Petersburg is not at all well-covered in terms of books, essays, articles, maps and the like. I always ignored this part of the war, only to find out later that many fascinating battles took place over the life of the Siege. It is my hope that this project can add at least a little to everyone’s understanding of the Siege.

3) I am a wargamer almost as much as I am a military history buff. I would like to take this information and use it in future Civil War games which come out. Current examples of the types of games I am talking about include Age of Rifles, Civil War Generals 2, the Battleground games from Talonsoft, and the Campaign Series by HPS, for whom I am an uncompensated playtester. The information contained within the spreadsheets will be available to anyone who wants it free of charge, but I hope to eventually make at least a little money off of this down the road by way of designing a game for a wargaming company. There is nothing in the works currently.

Sources I Have:

Sources I currently have include:

  • the Official Records on CD Rom
  • The Southern Historical Society Papers on CD Rom
  • Civil War Times Illustrated
  • America’s Civil War
  • Blue & Gray
  • North & South
  • Battles & Leaders of the American Civil War
  • The Official Records Atlas in book form
  • Dyer’s Compendium
  • Ten of the eleven volumes (missing only the Index of larger formations) of Sifakis’ Compendium of the Confederate States Army
  • Ray Sibley’s The Confederate Order of Battle: The Army of Northern Virginia.

Work Completed:

In 2009 I started Beyond the Crater: The Petersburg Campaign Online, a web site dedicated to the Petersburg Campaign.  Going forward this site will act as a repository for the information I’ve gathered during my research on the campaign.  Please check back at Beyond the Crater often for updates on the fascinating Civil War Petersburg Campaign.

Follow us on Twitter: @PetersburgSiege!

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