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From These Honored DeadHistorical Archaeology of the American Civil War$
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Clarence R. Geier, Douglas D. Scott, and Lawrence E. Babits

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780813049441

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813049441.001.0001

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The Fall 1863 Bivouac of the 14th Connecticut Infantry

The Fall 1863 Bivouac of the 14th Connecticut Infantry

Archaeological Investigations of Troops on Active Campaign

(p.159) 10 The Fall 1863 Bivouac of the 14th Connecticut Infantry
From These Honored Dead

Joseph F. Balicki

University Press of Florida

After the Federal Army aborted the Mine Run Campaign, the 14th Connecticut Infantry was ordered to return to their campground at Milton's Mill, near Brandy Station, Virginia. This camp was a front-line, short-term bivouac occupied by troops on active campaign. As such, the material culture these soldiers possessed differs from that found in permanent camps, camps of rear echelon troops, and winter quarters. The artifact assemblage found in a front-line camp reflects one activity: warfare. In such situations, ammunition, weapons, sustenance, and a means of carrying these items are essential for increasing one's chances of survival. Left behind the lines were many of the items that made camp life tolerable along with most of the trappings of the social spheres in which the soldiers moved in the civilian world. Archeological investigations carried out at the site included systematic shovel test survey, metal detection, and mechanical stripping. Only metal detection provided quantitative and meaningful information on the bivouac. Intra-site patterning of artifacts provides information on troop organization and camp layout.

Keywords:   Virginia, Mine Run Campaign, 14th Connecticut Infantry, Milton's Mill, Brandy Station, infantry camps, bivouac, metal detecting, shovel test

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