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Antietam - Fight for the Cornfield - 7:00am to 7:40am

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Antietam - Fight for the Cornfield - 7:00am to 7:40am
Antietam - Fight for the Cornfield - 7:00am to 7:40am

American Battlefield Trust’s map of the Battle of Antietam

At dawn on September 17, Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker’s I Corps mounted a powerful assault on Lee’s left flank from the Joseph Poffenberger farm near the North Woods. Repeated Union attacks and equally vicious Confederate counterattacks swept back and forth across farmer David Miller’s cornfield. Maj. Gen. Joseph Mansfield’s XII Corps supported Hooker’s left, attacking Jackson’s Confederates from the East Woods, Mansfield was killed near the Smoketown Road. Confederate Brig. Gen. William E. Starke was killed near the West Woods. Rebel dead lined the fences along the Hagerstown Pike as the Union infantry pushed south through the corn.  Brig. Gen. John Gibbon’s Iron Brigade of Wisconsin and Indiana regiments and Confederate regiments from Georgia and Texas exchange fire at point blank range at the edge of the cornfield. Col. Stephen D. Lee’s artillery battalion posted in front of the Dunker Church blasted the Union attackers. The Confederate 1st Texas Infantry from Brig. Gen. John B. Hood’s brigade lost 186 of 226 men in and around the cornfield, an 82% casualty rate, one of the highest of the entire war.