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

Scottsville

When War Came

 
 
Scottsville Marker Photo, Click for full size
By J. J. Prats, March 8, 2009
1. Scottsville Marker
Inscription. At 3 p.m. on Monday, March 6, 1865, the first of Union Gen. Philip H. Sheridan’s 10,000 cavalrymen under Gens. Wesley Merritt, Thomas Devin, and George A. Custer entered Scottsville unopposed. To accomplish their mission—destroy the James River and Kanawha Canal as a Confederate supply and communication line—officers occupied private homes, and soldiers pitched tents in yards and fields. They “burned a woolen factory with large quantity of cloth, candle factory with large amount of candles, lard-oil; large five-story flouring mill, with flour, corn, and wheat; a large manufactory, machine shops, and tobacco warehouses. A few private dwellings, close to the mill, were more or less charred by the intense heat. No accident or loss of life, however, occurred. ... Three canal boats were captured, one loaded with shell (9,600) and two with [Confederate] Government commissary stores and tobacco.”

Upriver, they disabled the canal locks from Scottsville to New Market. Downriver to Columbia, they destroyed “8 locks, 13 canal bridges, 4 flouring mills, 1 warehouse, 60 hogsheads tobacco, 1 boat house and a lumber yard.” They also penetrated the canal banks in places, draining the water into the river. The last Federals departed March 10 for Petersburg to participate in
Scottsville Marker at Canal Basin Square Photo, Click for full size
By J. J. Prats, March 8, 2009
2. Scottsville Marker at Canal Basin Square
the end of the siege there and the pursuit of Gen. Robert E. Lee’s army to Appomattox Court House.

(Legend to Map)
1. Cliffside — Built by John Lewis II about 1785 and enlarged in 1810, this house was used by Sheridan and Custer as their headquarters.
2. Scottsville Baptist Church — Located on Harrison Street, the church was impressed by Confederate authorities as a hospital in 1862. A hotel, a factory, a small frame house, and a newly erected building were also converted to hospital use under the collective name of The Confederate General Hospital at Scottsville. Due to the inadequate physical facilities, the isolated location, and unsatisfactory medical conditions, the hospital was closed in September 1863.
3. Confederate Memorial Cemetery — In 1914, the United Daughters of the Confederacy erected a granite obelisk and headstones marked C.V. honoring the soldiers who died in the Confederate hospitals in Scottsville. A monument dedicated in 2002 lists the names of these soldiers, their units, and their home states.
4. Old Hall — This Federal-style brick two-story house was built in 1830 by Benjamin H. Magruder and purchased by Joseph Russell Beal in 1850. Merritt commandeered the house as his headquarters on March 9, 1865.
5. Factory Building — This 1850s tobacco
Closeup of Map Shown on Marker Photo, Click for full size
By J. J. Prats
3. Closeup of Map Shown on Marker
factory continued to operate as late as 1880. It was partially burned by Union cavalry the night of March 6, 1865.
6. Canal Warehouse — Built about 1830, this building stood on the bank of the former James River and Kanawha Canal and was partially burned March 6, 1865. After the war, the building was rebuilt.
 
Erected by Civil War Trails.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the United Daughters of the Confederacy, and the Virginia Civil War Trails marker series.
 
Location. 37° 47.917′ N, 78° 29.6′ W. Marker is in Scottsville, Virginia, in Albemarle County. Marker is on East Main Street (Virginia Route 6) just east of Valley Street (Virginia Route 20), on the right when traveling east. Click for map. Marker is at the entrance to Canal Basin Square. Marker is in this post office area: Scottsville VA 24590, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Barclay House and Scottsville Museum (within shouting distance of this marker); Historic Scottsville (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Hurricane Camille (about 600 feet away); Scottsville Confederate Cemetery (approx. 0.3 miles away); Hatton Ferry
Cliffside (1835) Photo, Click for full size
By Paul Crumlish, September 19, 2009
4. Cliffside (1835)
Cliffside is a private residence, with not much visible from the public thoroughfare.
(approx. 0.8 miles away); a different marker also named Hatton Ferry (approx. 2.9 miles away); Ferries In Virginia/TheHatton Ferry/Heritage (approx. 3 miles away); Wilson Cary Nicholas (approx. 3.7 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Scottsville.
 
More about this marker. In addition to the map at the center of the marker, there is a period photograph of Scottsville Baptist Church in the upper right and a photo of the Memorial at the Confederate Memorial Cemetery below.
 
Also see . . .
1. Scottsville in the Civil War. “Sheridan’s men were down to their last ‘coffee and sugar’ rations, and their horses suffered from fatigue and hoof rot. They relied on the Scottsville countryside for ‘subsistence and forage’ and ransacked and looted homes, barns, and any potential hiding place for food, horses, and valuables. Cliffside’s carriage house and barn were torched, although the jewelry, which Mrs. John O. Lewis buried earlier near their chicken house, went undiscovered. Yankees stuffed hams in their knapsacks and strapped dead chickens to their saddles. At age 5, Fannie Patteson stood at a second floor window
Scottsville Baptist Church Photo, Click for full size
By Paul Crumlish, September 19, 2009
5. Scottsville Baptist Church
and watched her backyard fill with strange men, who upset their beehives and crammed honey into their mouths. As the Yankees snatched up every horse they spotted, twelve year-old Luther Pitts hid two local horses in the basement of the Barclay House on Main Street. Miletus Harris and his son, Charles, beat back the flames on their Main Street store as the nearby Columbian Hotel went up in smoke.” (Submitted on April 11, 2009.) 

2. Confederate General Hospital and Moore's Hill Cemetery. (Submitted on September 14, 2009, by PaulwC3 of Northern, Virginia.)
3. Cliffside. (Submitted on September 14, 2009, by PaulwC3 of Northern, Virginia.)
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
Moore's Hill Confederate Cemetery Photo, Click for full size
By Paul Crumlish, September 19, 2009
6. Moore's Hill Confederate Cemetery
The burial grounds for approximately 40 Confederate casualties who died in the local military hospitals.
Old Hall (1830) Photo, Click for full size
By Paul Crumlish, October 15, 2011
7. Old Hall (1830)
The Greek Revival James W. Mason House has served as wartime headquarters, sanitarium, and private residence.
Scottsville Factory Building Photo, Click for full size
By Paul Crumlish
8. Scottsville Factory Building
Built about 1850, used as a mill, tobacco factory and later a braid factory. One of several locations of Confederate hospitals in Scottsville.
Canal Warehouse, No. 6 on the Map Photo, Click for full size
By J. J. Prats, March 8, 2009
9. Canal Warehouse, No. 6 on the Map
Former Eagle Hotel (1832) Photo, Click for full size
By Paul Crumlish, September 19, 2009
10. Former Eagle Hotel (1832)
With a 130 beds it was the primary facility of the four Confederate hospitals in Scottsville area.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,578 times since then and 98 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia.   4, 5, 6. submitted on , by PaulwC3 of Northern, Virginia.   7. submitted on , by PaulwC3 of Northern, Virginia.   8. submitted on , by PaulwC3 of Northern, Virginia.   9. submitted on , by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia.   10. submitted on , by PaulwC3 of Northern, Virginia. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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