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Falling Waters in Berkeley County, West Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Battle of Falling Waters

Stuart’s Surprise

 
 
Battle of Falling Waters Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 31, 2011
1. Battle of Falling Waters Marker
Inscription. Here at Stumpy’s Hollow on the morning of July 2, 1861, Confederate Lieutenant Colonel J.E.B. Stuart captured a Union infantry company almost single-handedly. The Federals – Company I, fifteenth Pennsylvania Volunteers – were acting as skirmishers in advance of General Robert Patterson’s army as it marched toward Martinsburg. Arriving at this fork in the road from the north and uncertain as to which way to go, the captain left a lieutenant in charge and ordered the company to rest while he explored the road. The men stacked arms and relaxed by the split-rail fence along the road to await his return. Suddenly, a blue-clad officer (Stuart) rode across the field to the fence and ordered the soldiers to dismantle part of it so he could pass. They complied, but after the officer gained the road he drew pistols and allegedly said, “Surrender or you are dead men.” Some of the men lunged for their weapons just as the officer’s regiment rode up, and three Federals were shot. The others, including the lieutenant, a doctor, and 43 privates, surrendered.

Stuart was still wearing his U.S. Army uniform early in the war, as were many other Confederate officers. His regiment, the 1st Virginia Cavalry, arrived just in time to help him. The cavalrymen were guarding Colonel Thomas J. Jackson’s flank during the Battle of Falling
Battle of Falling Waters Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 31, 2011
2. Battle of Falling Waters Marker
Waters and riding to Martinsburg to rejoin Jackson’s army.

Colonel Stuart reports his capture of an entire company (the Fifteenth Pennsylvania Volunteers) with the exception of the captain.”   -
Colonel T.J. Jackson, July 3, 1861

Federal Version of Stuart’s Surprise
Company I of the Fifteenth was suddenly confronted by a battalion of Colonel Turner Ashby’s cavalry (in fact Stuart), dressed in blue blouses, and having the general appearance of Union troops . . . . Mistaking then for our own cavalry, [they] obeyed the order of Colonel [Stuart] to “let down the fence.” . . . The rebel leader, followed by some forty of his men, . . . surrounded the unsuspecting party, shot down the First Sergeant, and demanded the surrender of the entire body, consisting of the Second Lieutenant, John B. Hutchinson, and thirty-four men. [Stuart] escaped with his prisoners, and the result of his strategy was heralded through the South as a brilliant affair.” [Hutchinson was exchanged on Sept. 21, 1862. Confederate cavalry commander Turner Ashby, then a captain, was not at Falling Waters.]

-   Samuel P. Bates, History of the Pennsylvania Volunteers (1868-1871)

 
Erected by West Virginia Civil War Trails.
 
Marker series.
Battle of Falling Waters Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 31, 2011
3. Battle of Falling Waters Marker
This marker is included in the West Virginia Civil War Trails marker series.
 
Location. 39° 32.946′ N, 77° 55.108′ W. Marker is in Falling Waters, West Virginia, in Berkeley County. Marker is at the intersection of Hammonds Mill Road (West Virginia Route 901) and St. Andrews Drive (County Route 3/1), on the right when traveling west on Hammonds Mill Road. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Falling Waters WV 25419, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Stumpy’s Hollow (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Battle of Falling Waters (approx. 0.7 miles away); a different marker also named Battle of Falling Waters (approx. ľ mile away); a different marker also named Battle of Falling Waters (approx. 0.8 miles away); General “Stonewall” Jackson (approx. 0.9 miles away); a different marker also named Battle of Falling Waters (approx. 0.9 miles away); Battles of Falling Waters (approx. 1.8 miles away); Hammond House (approx. 2 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Falling Waters.
 
More about this marker. A picture of the 1st Virginia Cavalry from the Sept. 27, 1862 Harper’s Weekly appears at the bottom left of the marker. A portrait of Gen. J.E.B. Stuart, courtesy of the Library
Split Rail Fence at Stumpy’s Hollow image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 31, 2011
4. Split Rail Fence at Stumpy’s Hollow
This fence was constructed by the Falling Waters Battlefield Association to increase awareness of the Battle of Falling Waters. The marker can be seen on the right.
of Congress
is at the marker’s lower right.
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. View series of markers relating to the Battle of Falling Waters.
 
Also see . . .  Battle of Falling Waters - July 2, 1861. Falling Waters Battlefield Association website. (Submitted on August 4, 2011, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.) 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
Second Battle of Falling Waters Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 31, 2011
5. Second Battle of Falling Waters Marker
Stumpy’s Hollow
July 2, 1861
Site of J.E.B. Stuart’s capture of Union Soldiers.

Falling Waters
Battlefield Association
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,456 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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