Tag Archives: Siege of Petersburg

The Battle of White Oak Road, March 31, 1865

The initial Union movement during the final offensive against Petersburg had finally given Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant control of the Boydton Plank Road. With the South Side Railroad on his mind, Grant consolidated his position on March 31 and … Continue reading

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The Battle of Lewis Farm, March 29, 1865

I’m no fan of Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain but I understand the appeal. His skillful mastery of controlling the narrative regarding his service in the war has made him a larger than life figure. The topic of his role at Gettysburg … Continue reading

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“The best dispatch you can show me”: Lincoln Reviews the Fort Stedman Prisoners

“The time had arrived when all, from Generals Grant and Meade to those of the rank and file, were conscious that the final struggle was near,” claimed a Vermont soldier in late March 1865. The Union noose around Petersburg slowly … Continue reading

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The Sounds of Spring

Here in Petersburg, Virginia we are happy to finally once more see the ground after a recent and unusual spell of endless snow and ice. With a cheered spirit I took a look into the archives to search for the … Continue reading

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No Bluffing the King of Spades: Digging in along Hatcher’s Run

The Army of Northern Virginia had a thirty-seven mile front to defend during the early months of 1865. Its commander wanted to guarantee the earthworks protecting Richmond and Petersburg were up to his standards. “Opinions seem to differ as to … Continue reading

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“I aimed a bullet at his heart”

The men filed out into an open field and formed a square with one opened end to it. A lone soldier slowly marched the length of the route and upon the completion of the circuit walked to a small stake in … Continue reading

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The Joy and Sadness of Archibald Gracie

Brigadier General Archibald Gracie was an unlikely Confederate general: a New Yorker by birth and pedigree. Gracie’s family was prominent in New York City from the Colonial era on. Gracie received his education at West Point, graduating in 1854. His … Continue reading

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“Therefore we prefer bad weather at this time”

In the spirit of the holiday I thought I would highlight a curious item that a soldier in the trenches at Petersburg was thankful for. “We have had some very cold weather, the ground has been frozen hard but now the weather is … Continue reading

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The Letters of William Child

Today, we are pleased to welcome back guest author Dan Welch. When we last left William Child, assistant surgeon in the 5th New Hampshire Veteran Volunteer Infantry, he had written a letter home to his wife in mid-October 1864.  From the … Continue reading

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Tenting Among the Dead

Many locations throughout Virginia witnessed multiple battles during the four years of civil war. The slope to Marye’s Heights in Fredericksburg that seemed so insurmountable in December of 1862 again felt the tramp of Union attackers the following spring in … Continue reading

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