Battle of South Mills

The Battle of South Mills, also known as the Battle of Camden, took place on April 19, 1862 in Camden County, North Carolina as part of Union Army Maj. Gen. Ambrose E. Burnside's North Carolina expedition during the American Civil War.

Battle of South Mills
Part of the American Civil War
Battle of South Mills map.jpg
A map of the battle
DateApril 19, 1862 (1862-04-19)
Result Confederate Victory [1]
United States United States (Union) Confederate States of America CSA (Confederacy)
Commanders and leaders
Jesse L. Reno Ambrose R. Wright
Units involved
Department of North Carolina 3rd Georgia Infantry
Ferebee's North Carolina Militia
McComa's Battery
Gillett's Southampton Cavalry Co.
3,000[2] ~1,000[2]
Casualties and losses
6 killed, 19 wounded, 3 captured

Learning that the Confederates were building ironclads at Norfolk, Burnside planned an expedition to destroy the Dismal Swamp Canal locks to prevent transfer of the ships to Albemarle Sound. He entrusted the operation to Brig. Gen. Jesse L. Reno's command, which embarked on transports from Roanoke Island on April 18. By midnight, the convoy reached Elizabeth City and began disembarking troops. On the morning of April 19, Reno marched north on the road to South Mills. At the crossroads a few miles below South Mills, elements of Col. Ambrose R. Wright's command delayed the Federals until dark. Reno abandoned the expedition and withdrew during the night to the transports at Elizabeth City. The transports carried Reno's troops to New Bern where they arrived on April 22.


  1. ^ Union withdrew
  2. ^ a b Earl J. Hess (2005). Field Armies & Fortifications In The Civil War: The Eastern Campaigns, 1861-1864. Univ of North Carolina Press. p. 65. ISBN 978-0-8078-2931-8. Retrieved 20 January 2013.


Coordinates: 36°25′49″N 76°18′12″W / 36.4304°N 76.3033°W / 36.4304; -76.3033