Monday, February 16, 2009
Olustee Battlefield - Part Two
This area, just north of the railroad tracks at Olustee Battlefield Historic State Park, was the position of the 54th Massachusetts Infantry during the Battle of Olustee.
The position is just to the left of the photograph used in the last post and is directly in front of the monuments on the battlefield.
The battle was already lost by the time the famed African American unit became engaged. Confederate troops had successfully overlapped the advancing Union army and the front ranks of the Federal force had given way under fire not only from in front, but from both flanks as well.
In the closing stages of the fighting, the 54th was moved forward. A seasoned regiment (the focus of the movie Glory), the Massachusetts infantrymen had already taken part in several key engagements. They stood their ground well at Olustee, giving General Seymour time to withdraw his forces from the face of the Confederate assaults.
Our series on Olustee Battlefield will continue. Until the next post, you can read more on the battle by visiting www.exploresouthernhistory.com/olustee.