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Near Mechanicsville in Hanover County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Powerful Position

 
 
Powerful Position Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, August 25, 2010
1. Powerful Position Marker
Inscription. On the morning of June 27, General Fitz John Porter’s men arranged their formidable defenses along the slope of Boatswain’s Creek, where you are standing. Orders directed him to resist Lee’s advance, “even to my destruction,” remembered Porter.

Around 2:30 p.m. the first Confederate troops from A.P. Hill’s division attacked the center of Porter’s line. The fighting erupted less than ½-mile to your right. Hill’s men repeatedly advanced, only to meet destruction in the open fields across the creek. The Steep slope here allowed multiple lines of Union infantry to fire simultaneously, at long range, with great accuracy. Supporting artillery “roared incessantly like a great waterfall.” Confronted by this volcano of fire, Hill’s command stalled. It would require fresh troops with different tactics to threaten this strong line. Meanwhile, the sun dropped lower on the western horizon.

“This was the strongest point I saw occupied by either army during the war….The hill was covered by a large and open wood. At its foot a rail fence ran, which had been converted into an excellent breastwork. This was the enemy’s first line of battle. About twenty-five yards up the hill was a second line of breastworks, made of logs and dirt, and…on top of the hill was another line behind similar breastworks,
Powerful Position Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, August 25, 2010
2. Powerful Position Marker
and behind this was their artillery.”
Private John Worsham, 21st Virginia Infantry
 
Erected 2010 by Richmond National Battlefield Park.
 
Location. 37° 34.503′ N, 77° 17.522′ W. Marker is near Mechanicsville, Virginia, in Hanover County. Marker can be reached from Watt House Road 0.7 miles south of Cold Harbor Road (Virginia Route 156), on the right when traveling south. Click for map. This marker is located on the walking trail along Boatswain Creek in the Gaines' Mill Battlefield unit of the Richmond National Battlefield Park. Marker is at or near this postal address: 6283 Watt House Road, Mechanicsville VA 23111, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Battle of Gaines' Mill (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); The Battle Begins (about 300 feet away); The Union Left Flank (about 500 feet away); Hood's Attack (about 500 feet away); Gaines' Mill (about 500 feet away); Lee’s First Victory: At a Huge Cost (about 500 feet away); Confederate Pursuit (about 500 feet away); Seven Days Battles (about 500 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Mechanicsville.
 
More about this marker. On the right is an illustration of the strong defensive position held by the Union army.
 
Also see . . .
1. Old Marker at this Location. This marker replaced an older one at this location titled “A Powerful Position” (Submitted on August 25, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.) 

2. Richmond National Battlefield Park. (Submitted on August 25, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
3. Gaines' Mill. CWSAC Battle Summary (Submitted on August 25, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.) 

4. The Battle of Gaines' Mill. Civil War Trust (Submitted on June 13, 2011, 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 725 times since then and 25 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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