US Major General Ambrose Burnside, commander of the Department of the Ohio, undertook an expedition into East Tennessee to clear the roads and gaps to Virginia, and, if possible, secure the saltworks beyond Abingdon.
On September 22, Union Col. John W. Foster with his cavalry and artillery engaged Col. James E. Carter and his troops at Blountsville. Foster attacked at noon and in the four-hour battle, shelled the town and initiated a flanking movement, compelling the Confederates to withdraw. Blountsville was the initial step in the Union's attempt to force Confederate Major General Sam Jones and his command to retire from East Tennessee.
Result(s): Union victory
Location: Sullivan County
Campaign: East Tennessee Campaign (1863)
Date(s): September 22, 1863
Principal Commanders: Col. John W. Foster [US]; Col. James E. Carter [CS]
Forces Engaged: 2nd Brigade, 4th Division, XXIII Army Corps, Department of the Ohio [US]; 1st Tennessee Cavalry Regiment and Artillery (approx. 1,200) [CS]
Estimated Casualties: 192 total (US 27; CS 165)