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

Fatal Mistake at the East Angle

The Battle of Spotsylvania Courthouse

 
 
Fatal Mistake at the East Angle Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, June 23, 2013
1. Fatal Mistake at the East Angle Marker
Inscription. The sharp turn in the Confederate works here is called the “East Angle.” It marks the apex of the Muleshoe Salient and was one of the most vulnerable points on Lee’s line. Lee fortified the place heavily and placed upwards of 30 cannon in and around the works here. But on the night of May 11, fearing the Union army was about to march south, he pulled those guns out of the line. For Lee, it was a rare and grave misjudgment.

The Federals were not leaving Spotsylvania, but instead were moving into position to attack the Muleshoe. General Edward Johnson ordered the guns back to their places, but they arrived just in time to be captured by swarming Union soldiers. Two Confederate generals (including Johnson), 3,000 men, and 20 cannon fell into Union hands. It was one of the greatest disasters ever to befall Lee’s army.
 
Erected by Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park.
 
Location. 38° 13.443′ N, 77° 35.875′ W. Marker is in Spotsylvania, Virginia, in Spotsylvania County. Marker can be reached from Grant Drive north of Anderson Drive, on the left when traveling east. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Spotsylvania VA 22553, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within
Fatal Mistake at the East Angle Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, June 23, 2013
2. Fatal Mistake at the East Angle Marker
walking distance of this marker. Dawn Assault (here, next to this marker); "The Toughest Fight Yet" (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Struggle for the Bloody Angle (about 500 feet away); The Confederate Earthworks (about 500 feet away); Spotsylvania Campaign (about 500 feet away); a different marker also named Spotsylvania Campaign (about 500 feet away); 15th Regiment New Jersey Volunteers (about 600 feet away); 49th New York Infantry (about 600 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Spotsylvania.
 
Also see . . .  Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park. (Submitted on June 24, 2013.)
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
Northwest portion of the salient image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain
3. Northwest portion of the salient
An artillery piece represents the Confederate guns in this section of the works.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 305 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.   3. submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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