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

The Battle Begins

 
 
The Battle Begins Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, July 19, 2008
1. The Battle Begins Marker
Inscription. Mid-afternoon on August 28, 1862, Union soldiers from General Rufus King's division rest along Pageland Lane awaiting orders for them to continue marching south seven miles to Manassas Junction.

Late afternoon, orders arrived prompting King to return to the Warrenton Turnpike (modern Route 29), and proceed east toward Cenreville. The march resumed to located and defeat the elusive "Stonewall" Jackson who was operating in the Union rear with half the Confederate army.

After the head of King's column had reached the village of Groveton, Jackson made his presence known by sending out his artillery to fire down upon the moving column. Brigadier General John Gibbon's brigade then turned to fight a fierce twilight battle near the Brawner farm house that began the three-day battle of Second Manassas.

Brigadier General Rufus King
When Jackson's artillery fired on King's column, King and his aides were enjoying a picnic meal beside a pond near the road intersection. During the excitement, King suffered an epileptic seizure, resulting in his four brigades being thrown into battle without an overall commander.
 
Location. 38° 48.304′ N, 77° 34.276′ W. Marker is near Manassas, Virginia, in Prince William County. Marker is on Pageland
Battle Begins Map image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, July 19, 2008
2. Battle Begins Map
Note the north seeking arrow pointing to the right of the map. A red asterisk in the upper left indicates the marker location.
Lane (County Route 705) 0.1 miles south of Lee Highway (U.S. 29), on the right when traveling north. Click for map. Located at the Stuart Hill Center, in the western side of Manassas National Battlefield Park. Marker is in this post office area: Manassas VA 20109, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Battlefield In 1862 (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Stuart's Hill Walking Trail (about 500 feet away); Dunklin Monument (approx. 0.2 miles away); Meadowville (approx. 0.4 miles away); a different marker also named The Battle Begins (approx. 0.6 miles away); Archeology at Brawner Farm (approx. 0.6 miles away); A Stand Up Fight (approx. 0.7 miles away); 19th Indiana Infantry (approx. 0.7 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Manassas.
 
More about this marker. In the upper right is an illustration depicting mounted Federal officers clustered around a pond near the intersection of Warrenton Pike and Pageland Lane. Below it is a map detailing the tactical maneuvers described in the text. On the lower left is a portrait of General King.
 
Also see . . .  General Rufus King. King was a 1833 graduate of West Point and seemed to be destined for higher commands due to both ability and political connections. However he suffered
The Battle Begins Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, July 19, 2008
3. The Battle Begins Marker
Overlooking the intersection of Pageland Lane and the old Warrenton Turnpike.
from epilepsy, which was not discussed openly in polite society of the age. After the battle, some wrongfully accused King of drunkenness, based on his behavior following the seizure. King was removed from command following the battle and served on garrison duties until taking absence as the U.S. Minister to Rome. (Submitted on August 3, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.) 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
Intersection of Pageland Lane and Warrenton Pike image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, July 19, 2008
4. Intersection of Pageland Lane and Warrenton Pike
Looking from the marker location towards the intersection. The pond mentioned in the text may have been located near the parking area just down from the marker. Today the area is a "seasonal" pond, and more of a bog during the summer months.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 815 times since then and 26 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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