Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Near Leesburg in Loudoun County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Swann's Castle

Morven Park in the Civil War

 
 
Swann's Castle Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, November 16, 2008
1. Swann's Castle Marker
Inscription.  You are standing in the midst of the drilling and review grounds for Confederate soldiers between the summer of 1861 and March 1862. Former Baltimore mayor and future Maryland governor Thomas Swann, Jr. owned the 1,200-acre plantation but was absent. Confederate forces fortified nearby Leesburg, located close to the Potomac River and its many fords, to keep the Union army from crossing the river. Morven Park became an encampment and training site for Confederate forces until they abandoned Leesburg early in March 1862. Until then, the 4th South Carolina Infantry, 8th Virginia Infantry, and 17th Mississippi Infantry called "Swann's Castle" home.

Officers of the 17th Mississippi ordered their troops to build winter quarters shortly after they arrived at Morven Park on Christmas Eve 1861. The log huts with canvas or plank roofs held four to six soldiers, with fireplaces or, in some instances, wood stoves purchased in Leesburg. The remnants of more than fifty hut sites are located on the property nearby.

"War excitement & reenlistment are higher than ever. Formed in front of Swan[n]'s house & listened to an able speech on the subject
Swann's Castle Marker in Front of the Governor's Mansion image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, November 16, 2008
2. Swann's Castle Marker in Front of the Governor's Mansion
of reenlistment."
- Sgt. Exekiel Armstrong, Co. K, 17th Mississippi Infantry

"Tuesday, Dec. 24th, 1861, camp near Swan[n]'s. Moved this morning to this place which is north of Leesburg & but a short distance from the beautiful residence of the ex-mayor of Baltimore, Swan's. We are camped in his park, see a number of deer feeding around us. This is one of the prettiest places in the state. I suppose we will remain here for the winter if the Yankees do not molest us." - Pvt. Robert A. Moore, Co. G, 17th Mississippi Infantry

"Wednesday, Feb. 5th, camp near Swan[n]'s. Have been working on our house again to-day. ...Have built bunks & are well pleased with the idea of sleeping as if we were in beds." - Pvt. Robert A. Moore, Co. G, 17th Mississippi Infantry
 
Erected 2008 by Virginia Civil War Trails.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Virginia Civil War Trails series list.
 
Location. Marker is missing. It was located near 39° 8.371′ N, 77° 34.345′ W. Marker was near Leesburg, Virginia, in Loudoun County. Marker was on Southern Planter Lane, on the right when traveling south. Located in Morven Park, just north of Leesburg.
Swann's Castle Marker image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 26, 2018
3. Swann's Castle Marker
The grounds are reached from Old Waterford Road. Touch for map. Marker was in this post office area: Leesburg VA 20176, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this location, measured as the crow flies. A Serious Business (approx. 0.2 miles away); The Farmhand House (approx. ¼ mile away); The Garden (approx. ¼ mile away); 1862 Antietam Campaign (approx. 0.9 miles away); Mile Hill (approx. 0.9 miles away); Early’s Washington Campaign (approx. 1.1 miles away); Haud Pluribus Impar (approx. 1.3 miles away); Charles Fenton Mercer (approx. 1.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Leesburg.
 
More about this marker. In the upper center is an illustration of Morven Park as it appeared at the time of the Civil War. On the right is a portrait of Pvt. Moore. In the lower center is a photograph of Reconstructed log huts.
 
The Mansion as it Appears Today image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, November 16, 2008
4. The Mansion as it Appears Today
One of the Recreated Cabins image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, November 16, 2008
5. One of the Recreated Cabins
On the hills around the grounds, several depressions are indications of the cabins built by the Confederates during their stay. Equipment around the cabin was part of a living history demonstration.
Morven Park as it appeared during the Civil War image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 26, 2018
6. Morven Park as it appeared during the Civil War
Close-up of image on marker
Pvt. Robert A. Moore image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, February 26, 2018
7. Pvt. Robert A. Moore
Close-up of photo on marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on July 13, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 19, 2008. This page has been viewed 1,777 times since then and 59 times this year. Last updated on July 6, 2020, by Brandon Stahl of Fairfax, Virginia. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on November 19, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.   3. submitted on May 8, 2018, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.   4, 5. submitted on November 19, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.   6, 7. submitted on May 8, 2018, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.
Paid Advertisement
Aug. 13, 2020