December 13, 1643 - Maj. Gen. Sir William Waller wins the Battle of Alton. Campaigning in southern English in late 1643, Waller mounted two failed attempts to capture Basing House in November. Pursued back to Farnham Castle by Royalist forces, led by Sir Ralph Hopton, he elected not to give battle and allowed the enemy to withdraw into winter quarters. Regaining the initiative, Waller marched out on the night of December 12/13 and moved against the Earl of Crawford's garrison at Alton. Reaching the town the next morning, the Parliamentarian troops deployed for battle. Outnumbered and not believing his cavalry would be effective in the town's narrow streets, Crawford turned over command of Alton to Col. Richard Boles and departed for Winchester in hope of returning with reinforcements. Though Boles established a strong position for his infantry in the area around the Church of St. Lawrence, his troops were steadily pushed back by Waller's men. Finally trapped in the church, they made a gallant last stand that ended with Boles' death.
English Civil War: