Portrait of Earl Van Dorn

On January 10, 1862, Confederate President Jefferson Davis placed Major General Earl Van Dorn in command of the newly-created Trans-Mississippi District of Department Number 2. [Wikimedia Commons]

Army of the West (CSA) Facts

January 10–September 28, 1862

Key facts about the Confederate Army of the West.

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Formation Date

  • January 10, 1862
  • Named on March 4, 1862

Dissolution Date

  • September 28, 1862

Commanders

Notable Engagements

Significance

  • On January 10, 1862, Confederate President Jefferson Davis placed Major General Earl Van Dorn in command of the newly-created Trans-Mississippi District of Department Number 2.
  • On January 29, Major General Earl Van Dorn assumed command of the newly-created Trans-Mississippi District of Department Number 2.
  • On March 4, 1862, Van Dorn named the approximately 16,000 troops under his command the Army of the West.
  • The Union Army of the Southwest defeated the Army of the West at the Battle of Pea Ridge (March 6–8, 1862), in Arkansas.
  • Following the Battle of Pea Ridge, Major General Earl Van Dorn moved the remnants of his tattered Army of the West across the Mississippi River where they served under the overall command of Major General P.G.T. Beauregard during the Siege of Corinth (April 29 to May 30, 1862).
  • Major General Earl Van Dorn commanded the Army of the West from January 29–June 20, 1862.
  • Major General John P. McCown commanded the Army of the West from June 20–July 3, 1862.
  • Major General Sterling Price commanded the Army of the West from July 3–September 28, 1862.
  • The combined Union forces of Major Generals William S. Rosecrans and Edward O.C. Ord, under the overall command of Major General Ulysses S. Grant, defeated the Army of the West at the Battle of Iuka (September 19, 1862).
  • On September 28, 1862, Confederate officials merged the Army of the West with Major General Earl Van Dorn’s forces from the Department of Southern Mississippi and East Louisiana to form the Army of West Tennessee, ending the existence of the Army of the West.
  • Major General Sterling Price’s Corps of the Army of West Tennessee continued to informally use the name Army of the West after the merger that formed the Army of West Tennessee.
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Citation Information

The following information is provided for citations.

  • Article Title Army of the West (CSA) Facts
  • Coverage January 10–September 28, 1862
  • Author
  • Keywords army of the west
  • Website Name American History Central
  • Access Date July 27, 2021
  • Publisher R.Squared Communications, LLC
  • Original Published Date
  • Date of Last Update April 2, 2021
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