“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Selma in Johnston County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)

Mitchener Station

The Last Review


—Carolinas Campaign —

Mitchener Station Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, September 26, 2013
1. Mitchener Station Marker
Inscription. (preface)
The Carolinas Campaign began on February 1, 1865, when Union Gen. William T. Sherman led his army north from Savannah, Georgia, after the March to the Sea. Sherman’s objective was to join Gen. Ulysses S. Grant in Virginia to crush Gen. Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia. Scattered Confederate forces consolidated in North Carolina, the Confederacy’s logistical lifeline, where Sherman defeated Gen. Joseph E. Johnston’s last-ditch attack at Bentonville. After Sherman was reinforced at Goldsboro late in March, Johnston saw the futility of further resistance and surrendered near Durham on April 26, essentially ending the Civil War.

(main text)
This is the Stevens House at Mitchener Station, where in the final days of the war, the last reviews of the Confederate army under Gen. Joseph E. Johnston’s command took place on April 4, and April 7, 1865. The entire army—the remnants of the Army of Tennessee—paraded on April 4, but only Gen. William J. Hardee’s Corps marched on April 7, watched by Johnston and numerous dignitaries. Among them were North Carolina Governor Zebulon B. Vance, Raleigh Daily Confederate editor Duncan Kirkland McRae, and several women from Raleigh. Hardee gave a reception afterward, then the party headed to Gen. Robert F. Hoke’s headquarters, where Governor
Mitchener Station Marker image. Click for full size.
By Don Morfe, September 26, 2013
2. Mitchener Station Marker
Vance urged the North Carolina Junior Reserves to “fight till Hell freezes over!” After the speech, the governor and his entourage rode to the nearby Stevens farmhouse, where a cotillion was held in their honor before they returned to Raleigh. This proved to be the final review of the Confederate army, though few believed that the end was so near.

“I thought it rather too much of a good thing to be paraded twice in a week but the sight of the girls soon drove such unsoldierly thoughts away.” — Lt. Col. James W. Brown, 2nd South Carolina Artillery, on the review of Hardee’s Corps

“I witnessed to-day the saddest spectacle of my life…the review of the skeleton Army of Tennessee, that but one year ago was replete with men, and now filed by with tattered garments, worn out shoes, bare-footed and ranks so depleted that each color was supported by only thirty or forty men…The march was so slow—colors tattered and torn with bullets—that it looked like a funeral procession.” — Maj. Bromfield L. Ridley, Aide to Gen. A.P. Stewart, April 4, 1865

(lower left) Gen. Johnston and Gen. Hardee Courtesy Johnston County Heritage Center

(right)North Carolina Gov. Zebulon B. Vance Courtesy North Carolina Office of Archives and History

(lower right) Agrippa Mitchener Johnston County Heritage Center
In 1856, the North Carolina Railroad linked Smithfield to Raleigh and Goldsboro. Mitchener Station, named after a prosperous local family, the Mitcheners, stood at the intersection of the North Carolina Railroad and the old Louisburg-Smithfield Stage Road in present-day Selma. Confederate soldiers from Kinston and Raleigh arrived at the station in March 1865 and took part in the Battle of Bentonville.
Erected by North Carolina Civil War Trails.
Marker series. This marker is included in the North Carolina Civil War Trails marker series.
Location. 35° 33.537′ N, 78° 17.81′ W. Marker is in Selma, North Carolina, in Johnston County. Marker is at the intersection of Buffalo Road and Old Beulah Road, on the right when traveling north on Buffalo Road. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Selma NC 27576, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Last Grand Review (here, next to this marker); The Battle of Bentonville (approx. 2.9 miles away); Sherman Receives News of Lee's Surrender in Smithfield (approx. 4.3 miles away); Occupation of Smithfield (approx. 4.3 miles away); Edward W. Pou (approx. 4.4 miles away); The Town of Smithfield (approx. 4.4 miles away); a different marker also named Town of Smithfield (approx. 4.4 miles away); Hastings House (approx. 4.4 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Selma.
Categories. War, US Civil
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. This page has been viewed 327 times since then and 62 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Don Morfe of Baltimore, Md 21234. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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