Shiloh National Military Park

Water Oaks Pond

Water Oaks Pond (25K)

Image: Water Oaks Pond. This photograph looks south-southeast across Water Oaks Pond.

This picture shows six different monuments. Clearly seen on the left is the 11th Iowa Infantry regiment monument. In the center left of the picture is a cannon representing the position of Dresser's Battery D, of the 2nd Illinois Light Artillery regiment. Behind the cannon is the battery's monument. Just visible in the center right is what looks like a short, square monument. This is the monument to the 46th Illinois Infantry regiment. If you look closely you will see that the 46th Illinois monument is actually behind a tall, pointed monument which is partially hidden by a tree. This is the monument to the 32nd Indiana Infantry regiment. To the right of the 32nd Indiana monument, in the far background, is the top of the 20th Illinois Infantry regiment monument. On the far right edge of the picture is the Illinois State Memorial.

For other monuments in this portion of the battlefield, see the McAllister's Battery and the Raith Monument pages.

Water Oaks Pond was the center of the Union defense on their right flank on April 6, 1862. This position was critical because it protected the right flank of the Hornets' Nest position at Duncan Field. When the Union position collapsed, the fate of the Hornets' Nest was sealed.

As bloody as the combat had been the day before, the pond was the site of even heavier fighting on April 7. The division of Union Brigadier General Lew Wallace, with remnants of the divisions of Brig. Gen. William T. Sherman and Brig. Gen. John A. McClernand, pushed back the Confederate left flank. The Confederates counterattacked in the vicinity of Water Oaks Pond with the brigades of Colonel Randall L. Gibson and Col. Patton Anderson, and the division of Maj. Gen. Benjamin F. Cheatham. For a while it looked like the Union force would have to retreat, but ultimately the Confederate attack failed.

The battle moved south from the pond, leaving in its wake the wounded and they dying. These men made their way to the pond for water, staining the water red with their blood.

This picture was captured on Fuji ISO 200 film in March, 2000. They were taken with a Nikon F-601 autofocus SLR, using a Nikkor 24mm - 50mm f2.8 wide angle zoom lens.