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

Baylor’s Farm

Prelude to Petersburg


—Lee vs. Grant - The 1864 Campaign —

Baylor’s Farm  -  Prelude to Petersburg marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, April 25, 2007
1. Baylor’s Farm - Prelude to Petersburg marker
This marker is part of the Lee vs Grant - The 1864 Campaign of the Virginia Civil War Trails.
Inscription. Ordered to take Petersburg, Gen. William F. “Baldy” Smith directed Gen. Edward W. Hinks’ division of African American soldiers to move from City Point toward the Cockade City. Hinks encountered unexpected Confederate resistance at Baylor’s Farm in the early morning hours of June 15, 1864. Southern cavalrymen under Gen. James Dearing, supported by the Petersburg Artillery, had fortified an already strong position by constructing earthworks across City Point Road. Smith then commanded Hinks to attack this Confederate position.

Never before tested in battle, Hinks’ black soldiers pressed forward with a shout, but a blast of “spherical case, canister and musketry” sent the attackers to the rear. Undaunted, the Federals regrouped and resumed the assault, led by the 22nd United States Colored Troops. Their gallant charge shattered the Confederate line.

This minor engagement – less than two hours long and costing slightly more than 300 Union casualties out of 3500 participants – delayed Smith’s advance on Petersburg. By defending its position at Baylor’s Farm, the Confederate army gained the time it needed to strengthen Petersburg’s defenses. The skirmish at Baylor’s Farm also proved African American soldiers’ willingness and ability to fight, qualities the Union army would rely on throughout
Baylor's Farm Battle Map image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, April 25, 2007
2. Baylor's Farm Battle Map
the Petersburg campaign.

“…when the command was given to us, ‘Charge bayonets! Forward double quick!’ the black column rushed forward, raising the battle yell, and in a few moments more we mounted the rebel parapets. And to our great surprise, we found that the boasted Southern chivalry had fled….”
- Sgt. Major Milton M. Holland, U.S.C.T.
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Virginia Civil War Trails marker series.
Location. 37° 16.186′ N, 77° 19.101′ W. Marker is in Hopewell, Virginia. Marker is at the intersection of Oaklawn Boulevard (Virginia Route 36) and U.S. 295, on the right on Oaklawn Boulevard. Click for map. Marker is in the parking lot of the City of Hopewell Visitor Center. Marker is at or near this postal address: 4100 Oaklawn Boulevard, Hopewell VA 23860, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Virginia’s First World War I Monument (approx. 2.1 miles away); City Point and Hopewell (approx. 2.6 miles away); Women's Army Corps Training Center (approx. 2.6 miles away); Dictator (approx. 2.6 miles away); Opportunity Lost (approx. 2.7 miles away); The Army of the James Monument (approx. 2.7 miles away); Jordon Family Cemetery (approx. 2.7 miles away); Battery 5 of the Dimmock Line (approx. 2.7 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Hopewell.
More about this marker. An illustration on the lower left is “Twenty-Second Negro Regiment, Duncan’s Brigade, carrying the First Line of Confederate Works before Petersburg, June 15, 1864.” - sketch by Edwin Forbes.

A portrait of Milton M. Holland is to the left of his quoted passage. A map detailing the action described in the text is on the lower right.
Also see . . .
1. Civil War Trails – Lee vs. Grant: The 1864 Overland Campaign Tour. (Submitted on March 6, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
2. Baylors Farm, June 15. The Civil War Siege of Petersburg. (Submitted on December 21, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.) 
Categories. African AmericansWar, US Civil
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,437 times since then and 128 times this year. Last updated on , by J. Makali Bruton of San Salvador, El Salvador. Photos:   1. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.   2. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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