Leon in Madison County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Battle of James City
Opening Battle of the Bristoe Station Campaign
Confederate Gen. James B. Gordon’s brigade drove Union Gen. Judson Kilpatrick’s troopers from the Robinson River to Bethsaida Church. Stuart attacked and drove Kilpatrick from the field.
Stuart pursued Kilpatrick to James City while a Confederate detachment was sent to shut down a Union signal station atop Thoroughfare Mountain.
As Stuart entered the village, he encountered two of Kilpatrick’s brigades and French’s infantry division which commanded six pieces of artillery. As Stuart approached, the Union troops withdrew to a position across Crooked Run in Culpeper County. They drew up in line of battle on a hill overlooking James City, with their artillery ready to confront Stuart, should he advance.
Throughout the remainder of the day, the opposing batteries engaged one another. About 4 p.m. the Union cavalry charged to within 200 yards of Stuart’s line, when deadly fire from Confederate sharpshooters cut them to pieces. Artillery fire continued until nightfall, leaving the inhabitants of James City caught in the crossfire. Smoke and fire settled over the village.
This was the only instance during the war when Stuart led a force completely without Virginians.
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Virginia Civil War Trails marker series.
Location. 38° 26.26′ N, 78° 8.276′ W. Marker is in Leon, Virginia, in Madison County. Marker can be reached from Leon Road (Virginia Route 631). Click for map. Marker is on Leon Road (VA Rt. 631) just south of Route 29. Marker is in this post office area: Leon VA 22725, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Engagement at James City (approx. 0.3 miles away); Madison County / Culpeper County (approx. half a mile away); 46th Pennsylvania Infantry (approx. 4.3 miles away); Battle of Cedar Mountain (approx. 4.4 miles away); a different marker also named Battle of Cedar Mountain (approx. 4.4 miles away); Hand-to-Hand Fighting (approx. 4.4 miles away); a different marker also named The Battle of Cedar Mountain (approx. 4.4 miles away); a different marker also named The Battle of Cedar Mountain (approx. 4.4 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Leon.
More The marker features photos of Gens. Judson Kilpatrick and J.E.B. Stuart. Included also is a map outlining the movements and sequence of events of the Battle of James City.
Also see . . .
1. Battle of James City. excerpts from the Madison Eagle May 13, 1999.
2. History of James City. “This is the historic property otherwise known as James City in what is now Leon, Virginia. Daniel James first purchased the property in 1796...”
Categories. • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page originally submitted on . This page has been viewed 2,896 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on . • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.