Historic America

Skirmish at Sporting Hill, Pennsylvania

This often-overlooked clash near Harrisburg was the northernmost engagement of the Gettysburg Campaign.

The Skirmish at Sporting Hill was fought on June 30, 1863 between Union forces commanded by Maj. Gen. Darius N. Couch and Confederate cavalry commanded by Brig. Gen. Albert G. Jenkins outside Harrisburg, Pennsylvania during the American Civil War. Though small, this inconclusive skirmish represented the northernmost armed engagement of the Gettysburg Campaign and resulted in approximately 52 total casualties.

In June 1863, after a dramatic victory at the Battle of Chancellorsville, Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee made the fateful decision to move north with his Army of Northern Virginia and invade Pennsylvania. The Union Army of the Potomac was slow to respond, and Confederate forces met little resistance as they fanned out across southern Pennsylvania raiding towns, sending escaped slaves south, and paying for supplies in worthless Confederate currency. Advanced units of Lt. Gen. Richard S. Ewell’s Second Corps neared the Susquehanna River by June 28th.

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