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

In Reserve

 
 
In Reserve Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, February 28, 2009
1. In Reserve Marker
Inscription. You are standing among entrenchments built by soldiers of the Union Eighteenth Corps less than ¼ mile from the front lines. At Cold Harbor regiments typically rotated out of the front lines every other day. This explains the many layers of reserve lines seen here. Although not safe from enemy fire, soldiers in reserve could at least relax their vigilance somewhat.

A New Hampshire soldier stationed here during the second week of the battle wrote about these reserve positions:

Bullets come over frequently to our rear lines, after traveling nearly…one third of a mile. The hum of a spent bullet is very peculiar, often giving timely warning of its approach. The enemy’s Coehorn mortar shells, too, are very plentiful today. This is our first experience with them, in any number, while we are within our rear trenches. The enemy fires them high into the air whence they seem to come straight down into the rear trenches, with their threatening “whistle-whistle” - “whistle-whistle,” and the final crack and whirr of the pieces.

The Confederate army did not have Coehorn mortars at Cold Harbor. Instead they improvised by burying the back ends of some cannon, which elevated the barrel and allowed the cannoneers to lob conventional artillery rounds high into the air. Men on the receiving
In Reserve Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, February 28, 2009
2. In Reserve Marker
end—like the New Hampshire soldier—probably could not tell the difference.
 
Erected by National Park Service.
 
Location. 37° 35.635′ N, 77° 17.151′ W. Marker is near Mechanicsville, Virginia, in Hanover County. Marker can be reached from Anderson-Wright Drive 0.4 miles north of Cold Harbor Road (Virginia Route 156), on the left when traveling south. Click for map. This marker is located along the extended loop trail in the Cold Harbor Battlefield Unit of the Richmond National Battlefield Park. Marker is at or near this postal address: 5515 Anderson-Wright Drive, Mechanicsville VA 23111, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Cold Harbor Killing Fields (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Grant's Grand Assault (about 700 feet away); Union Earth Works (about 700 feet away); Between the Lines (approx. 0.2 miles away); Confederate Fortifications (approx. ¼ mile away); A Bloody Baptism of Fire (approx. 0.3 miles away); Stand Guard And Stay Awake (approx. 0.4 miles away); A Deadly Delay (approx. 0.4 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Mechanicsville.
 
Also see . . .
1. Richmond National Battlefield Park. Cold Harbor. (Submitted on February 28, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
Extended loop trail east of Anderson-Wright Drive. image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, February 28, 2009
3. Extended loop trail east of Anderson-Wright Drive.
 

2. CWSAC Battle Summary. Cold Harbor. (Submitted on February 28, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.) 

3. Cold Harbor Battlefield Virtual Tour by Markers. This is one of the many markers along the walking trail, extended loop trail, and auto tour route in the Cold Harbor Battlefield Unit of the Richmond National Battlefield Park. (Submitted on March 9, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.) 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 611 times since then and 69 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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