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

Banks’s Grand Review

Ruffles, Flourishes, Drills and Heat

 
 
Banks’s Grand Review Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, September 25, 2014
1. Banks’s Grand Review Marker
Inscription. In July and August, 1862, the Union Army of Virginia’s 2nd Corps under Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks camped in and around Little Washington. Col. Charles E.F. Collis’s Zouaves, noted for their French-style red and blue uniforms, served as Banks’s bodyguard. The army’s commander, Gen. John Pope, remained near Washington, D.C., until the end of July but communicated with Banks by U.S. Military Telegraph. Army construction crews strung lines from Warrenton to Little Washington and on to Sperryville.

Banks’s corps conducted lengthy daily drills in the fields directly southeast of here, often in oppressive heat. On July 28, Banks held one of several massive ‘Grand Reviews” of his troops. Banks, whose command Confederate Gen. Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson had thrashed during Jackson’s Shenandoah Valley campaign in May and June, wrote to his wife that this was the first time he had ever given drilling orders to so many men. Banks held another massive review a few days later, in honor of the Army of Virginia’s commander, Gen. John Pope. On August 9, Banks’s men bore the brunt of fighting at the Battle of Cedar Mountain, about 25 miles south of here in Culpeper County.

“Yesterday we had a splendid review of my troops. After the review I drilled them all myself in the evolutions
Banks’s Grand Review Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, September 25, 2014
2. Banks’s Grand Review Marker
The reviewing grounds could have been in front of the marker, beyond the row of new trees.
of the line. It was the first time I had ever [done so], and to some 10,000 men, I was astonished I felt I had been doing it all my life and I think the officers were surprised. They all said it could not be done by one man, and I suppose had not seen it. I was delighted but didn’t say a word to anyone about it.”
—Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks, letter to his wife, July 29, 1862.
 
Erected by Civil War Trails.
 
Location. 38° 41.466′ N, 78° 10.512′ W. Marker is near Washington, Virginia, in Rappahannock County. Marker is at the intersection of Bank Road and Lee Highway (U.S. 211) on Bank Road. Click for map. It is at the Union First Market Bank parking lot. Marker is at or near this postal address: 7 Bank Rd, Washington VA 22747, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Music, Omens, and Destiny (approx. 0.8 miles away); Washington, Virginia (approx. 1.4 miles away); Ellerslie (approx. 1.5 miles away); Kitty Payne (approx. 1.6 miles away); The Town of Washington, Virginia (approx. 1.7 miles away); A Tale of Two Mills (approx.
Union General Nathaniel P. Banks (1816–1894) image. Click for full size.
circa 1865
3. Union General Nathaniel P. Banks (1816–1894)
Banks was Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives and Governor of Massachusetts before the Civil War. This portrait was taken from a stereo card at the Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Online Catalog. It was originally published by Taylor & Huntington in Hartford, Connecticut, between 1861 and 1865.
2 miles away); a different marker also named Washington, Virginia (approx. 2.2 miles away); Sister Caroline (approx. 3.6 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Washington.
 
More about this marker. On the lower left of this interpretative panel a photograph is reproduced captioned, “military telegraph construction crew.” The center has a photograph captioned, “Banks’s grand review, with infantrymen in a hollow square at right defending against a mock cavalry attack.” Just below and to the left of that photograph is a portrait of “Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks.” On the lower right is a color photograph of “Collis’s Zouaves.”
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
U.S. Military Telegraph Construction Corps image. Click for full size.
By Timothy J. O’Sullivan, photographer. Negative printed by Alexander Gardner, 1864
4. U.S. Military Telegraph Construction Corps
Copy taken from the Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Online Catalog. This is the photograph reproduced on the marker.
Grand review of Gen. N.P. Banks's Corps at Little Washington, Va. image. Click for full size.
By Edwin Forbes, June 25, 1863
5. Grand review of Gen. N.P. Banks's Corps at Little Washington, Va.
Copy of pencil drawing taken from the Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Online Catalog. A more tightly cropped version was reproduced on this marker. Click on image to zoom in and study the detail.
Camp "N. P. Banks," Col. Collis' Regiment of Zouaves d'Afrique image. Click for full size.
By Louis N. Rosenthal, Lithographer, 1862
6. Camp "N. P. Banks," Col. Collis' Regiment of Zouaves d'Afrique
This copy was taken from the Library of Congress Prints & Online Photograph Catalog. The original hand-colored lithograph is approx 18½ by 23¼ inches. A more tightly cropped version was reproduced on this marker.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia. This page has been viewed 295 times since then and 32 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on , by J. J. Prats of Springfield, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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