“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Mechanicsville in Hanover County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

Gaines’ Mill

Gaines' Mill Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, June 14, 2003
1. Gaines' Mill Marker
Inscription. Near this spot stood the mill that gave its name to the battle of June 27, 1862 also called “First Cold Harbor”. About 1500 yards SSW was the home of Dr. Gaines, where the United States Army had its balloon station.
Erected by Battlefield Markers Association. (Marker Number 9.)
Marker series. This marker is included in the D.S. Freeman (Richmond Battlefields) marker series.
Location. 37° 35.211′ N, 77° 18.035′ W. Marker is near Mechanicsville, Virginia, in Hanover County. Marker is on Cold Harbor Road 0.1 miles east of Old Millstone Drive, on the left when traveling east. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Mechanicsville VA 23111, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Seven Days Battles (here, next to this marker); The Tramp of Marching Feet (approx. half a mile away); Firing Blind (approx. half a mile away); New Cold Harbor (approx. 0.6 miles away); a different marker also named Seven Days’ Battles (approx. 0.6 miles away); Confederate Breastworks (approx. 0.6 miles away); Nowhere To Go (approx. 0.7 miles away); Those People Stand No Chance (approx. 0.7 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Mechanicsville.
Additional keywords.
Gaines' Mill Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, June 14, 2003
2. Gaines' Mill Marker
Freeman Markers, Richmond Battlefield Parks Corporation, Douglas Southall Freeman
Categories. War, US Civil
Ruins of Gaines' Mill, VA., April, 1865 (Plate 93) image. Click for full size.
By Alexander Gardner, April 1865
3. Ruins of Gaines' Mill, VA., April, 1865 (Plate 93)
In 1866, Alexander Gardner, a photographer who had been in Matthew Brady's employ, published his Photographic Sketchbook of the War, the first published collection of Civil War photographs, of which this plate was one. Gardner's accompanying text describes the ruins of the mill thusly, “… it was the scene of severe fighting, and at the close of that bloody day, the building was used as a hospital. All of the structure that would burn, was destroyed in one of the raids around Richmond, leaving only the brick superstructure, above which, scorched by fire, the dead trees spread their blackened branches. In front, the partially exposed skeleton illustrates the hasty manner of the soldier’s burial, it being by no means uncommon for the rains to wash away the shallow covering….The owner of the mill did not have a creditable reputation in the army. Returned prisoners, captured at his house, state that when our troops left the neighborhood, he turned out the sick and wounded from his barns and outbuildings, and held high carnival, with his friends of the rebel army, digging up his buried wine for their delectation. If this is true, he suffered no more than his deserts, in the destruction of his property…."
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 927 times since then and 64 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.   3. submitted on . • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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