On this date, May 23, in 1864, Ulysses S. Grant rudely interrupted an afternoon glass of buttermilk Robert E. Lee was enjoying on the porch of the Fox house, just south of the North Anna River. By the end of the day, a Confederate staffer would be buried under a pile of chimney bricks.
Recently, the American Battlefield Trust preserved this property. Although it is not yet accessible to the public, to commemorate today’s anniversary, the Trust granted me access to the Fox House for a special video for Emerging Civil War.
Lee was on the front porch of the Fox House when Federal artillery opened from across the river. There’s damage to the front door frame allegedly from that bombardment (below). (In the photo above, it’s obscured by my big head!)
Last year, I posted some research I’d done on the Fox house—also known as Ellington—including several cool historic photos. I also had the chance to give viewers a tour inside the house as part of a Facebook LIVE event hosted by the American Battlefield Trust.
I want to offer a special thank you to Tom Gilmore and Matt George from the American Battlefield Trust, who facilitated my visit.