Suffolk, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Siege of Suﬀolk
Bacon for the Confederacy
The town of Suffolk was of considerable strategic importance during the Civil War. On May 12, 1862, Col. Charles C. Dodge’s 1st New York Mounted Rifles rode into Suffolk and began the Union occupation that would last throughout the war. Mayor Benjamin Riddick surrendered the town to Dodge with the assurance that peaceable citizens’ rights would be protected. Additional Federal troops from Camp Butler, under the command of Brig. Gen. J.K.F. Mansfield, quickly moved into Suffolk as local Confederate troops withdrew west to the Blackwater River.
When the Union IX Corps reinforced Fort Monroe in February 1863, Robert E. Lee countered by sending Lt. Gen. James Longstreet with the divisions of John Bell Hood, George Pickett and Samuel French to the Tidewater region to block any possible advance against Richmond via Petersburg from Suffolk. It was Longstreet’s first independent command. After an unsuccessful expedition in North Carolina, Longstreet began his operations against Maj. Gen. J.J. Peck’s 15,000-man force in Suffolk on April
Longstreet abandoned the siege on May 4, 1863, to help Lee defend against Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker’s move towards Richmond. Even though the siege was unable to dislodge the Union control of Suffolk, it was considered a success since the Confederates were able to forage valuable supplies from the surrounding rich countryside and contain any Federal Southside advance against Richmond.
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Virginia Civil War Trails marker series.
Location. 36° 44.098′ N, 76° 34.745′ W. Marker is in Suffolk, Virginia. Marker can be reached Click for map. The CWT marker is located in Cedar Hill Cemetery. Marker is at or near this postal address: 105 Mahan Street, Suffolk VA 23434, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within one mile of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Riddick’s Folly (approx. ¼ mile away); The Site of the First Church (approx. 0.3 miles away); First Suffolk Church (approx. 0.3 miles away); Early History of Suffolk (approx. 0.3 miles away); Mr. Peanut (approx. 0.7 miles away); Booker T. Washington High School (approx. 0.7 miles away); Nansemond Collegiate Institute (approx. 0.9 miles away); a different marker also named Siege of Suffolk (approx. one mile away). Click for a list of all markers in Suffolk.
More about this marker. In the center are photographs of three Confederate Generals: “Maj. Gen. John Bell Hood”, “Lt. Gen. James Longstreet”, and “Maj. Gen. George Pickett”. Photos courtesy of The Museum of the Confederacy.
Also see . . .
1. SCV Tom Smith Camp #1702. Col. Thomas W. Smith (Submitted on April 20, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
2. Cincinnati Civil War Round Table. "Pork Belly Politics or How Longstreet Brought (Submitted on April 22, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
3. Civil War Traveler - Tidewater Virginia - More Sites. Suffolk. Siege of Suffolk. (Submitted on May 18, 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 2,259 times since then and 173 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. 8. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. 9, 10, 11, 12, 13. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.