One hundred and fifty years ago, General Thomas Hindman was steadily issuing orders and writing correspondence that kept the Confederate Army in motion. While the Federal Army began fortifying Helena, the Rebs began establishing new camps in Central Arkansas. Known today for its water park, Crystal Hill was significant one hundred and fifty years ago.
In a letter dated July 18, 1862, Hindman orders several regiments of Confederate troops “to the new camp, Crystal Hill, twelve miles above Little Rock, on the east side of the river.” Both armies knew the dangers and hazards of setting up large military camps in large cities. Little Rock’s infrastructure would not be able to house thousands of soldiers until new barracks were built following the Federal occupation following the Battle of Bayou Fourche in September, 1863.
With troops organizing at Camp While Sulphur Springs in Jefferson County and Camp Crystal Hill in Pulaski County, the Confederate buildup of troop strength throughout the state became a reality.
This week one hundred and fifty years ago, there were several military actions in Arkansas:
July 20: Skirmish at Gaines Landing
July 20: Skirmish at Pittman’s Ferry
July 22-25: Expedition from Helena to Coldwater, MS
July 23: Skirmish at Bole’s Farm
July 24: Expedition from Helena to Marianna