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

Post-Appomattox Tragedy

 
 
Post-Appomattox Tragedy Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, October 17, 2020
1. Post-Appomattox Tragedy Marker
Inscription.  On 22 May 1865, after the Civil War ended. Capt. George W. Summers, Sgt. I. Newton Koontz, and two other armed veterans of Co. D, 7th Virginia Cavalry, robbed six Federal cavalrymen of their horses near Woodstock. The horses were returned the next day to the 192d Ohio Volunteer Infantry at Rude’s Hill. Despite assurances that all was forgiven, Lt. Col. Cyrus Hussy, temporarily commanding the 192nd, later ordered the men arrested. The others escaped, but Summers and Koontz were shot without trial here on 27 June. Thirty years later, Capt. Thomas J. Adams and friends erected the nearby monument to commemorate their deaths.
 
Erected 1999 by the Department of Historic Resources; funded privately by Mr. D. Coiner Rosen. (Marker Number A-69.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Virginia Department of Historic Resources series list. A significant historical date for this entry is May 22, 1865.
 
Location. 38° 41.564′ N, 78° 39′ W. Marker is near New Market, Virginia, in Shenandoah
Post-Appomattox Tragedy Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, October 17, 2020
2. Post-Appomattox Tragedy Marker
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County. Marker is at the intersection of Old Valley Pike (U.S. 11) and Monument Lane (Virginia Route 828), on the left when traveling north on Old Valley Pike. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: New Market VA 22844, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Summers & Koontz Executions (a few steps from this marker); DuPont at Rude’s Hill (a few steps from this marker); The Post-Appomattox Tragedy Monument (within shouting distance of this marker); Summers & Koontz Monument (within shouting distance of this marker); In Memory of Noah Richard Proctor (approx. 0.2 miles away); Cavalry Engagement (approx. 0.7 miles away); Rude’s Hill (approx. 0.7 miles away); Rude’s Hill Action (approx. 0.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in New Market.
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Markers detailing this incident.
 
Also see . . .
1. Tragedy in the Shenandoah Valley: The Story of the Summers-Koontz Execution. Book by Robert H. Moore, II on Amazon.com. Publisher’s Description:

‘Try to meet me in Heaven where I hope to go.’

“These poignant words were written in the summer of 1865 by twenty-year-old Confederate Sergeant Isaac Newton Koontz, in a letter he penned for his fiancee just hours before his death at the hands of Union firing squad in the heart of Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. The execution of Koontz and Captain George Summers came after the surrender at Appomattox Court House, and remains one of the most tragic yet little-known events of the Civil War.

“One month prior to kneeling on the hard ground to face their
Marker and Monument image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, September 26, 2006
3. Marker and Monument
A fence topped with barbed wire used to prevent access to pasture where monument, visible in the distance to the right of marker, is located.
deaths, Koontz and Summers, along with four other Confederate soldiers, stole horses from a Union troop stationed near their home. Soon after the theft, the young men—remorseful and goaded by their fathers to uphold their honor—returned the horses and were offered a pardon by Union Colonel Francis Butterfield. The rebs returned home, free of mind and clean of conscious. All had been forgiven. Or so they thought.

“As the sun crept over the horizon on June 27, 1865, Union soldiers—under new command—swarmed the family homes of Summers and Koontz in a swift raid and arrested the two bewildered men. They were told that their pardons were no longer valid, and later that same day they were tied to a stake and shot with Union muskets—no trial, no judge, no jury.

“Before their deaths, Summers and Koontz were allowed to write farewell letters to their loved ones, and these heartrending documents serve as the basis for Robert Moore’s insightful recounting of the Summers-Koontz execution. An experienced Civil War writer and a direct descendent of Koontz’s fiancee, Moore brings this shocking story to life with a clarity that will appeal to Civil War experts and enthusiasts alike. Exhaustively researched and well written, Tragedy in the Shenandoah Valley tells one of the great and largely untold stories of the Civil War.”
Telephoto Shot of Summers and Koontz Monument image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, September 26, 2006
4. Telephoto Shot of Summers and Koontz Monument
(Submitted on January 29, 2007.) 

2. Avenue of Armies: Civil War Sites and Stories of Luray and Page County, Virginia. (Submitted on March 20, 2009, by Robert H. Moore, II of Winchester, Virginia.)
 
Additional commentary.
1. Inscriptions on the Summers and Koontz Monument
[East -side toward the road]:
Capt. Geo. W. Summers
and
Sergt. Newton Koontz.
Company D. 7th Virginia Cavalry.
were here executed on
June27. 1865. By order of
Lt. Cal. Huzzy. 192d 0. V. M. I.

[North side]:
Without the privilege of any kind of trial:
they having been arrested at their
homes in Page Co., brought here. and shot.

[West side is blank]:

[South side]:
Erected in 1893 by friends under the supervision of Capt. T. J. Adams

In November of 2008 the site was restored and is now open to the public. Capt. Jack Adams Camp No. 1951 Sons of Confederate Veterans, Edinburg VA
    — Submitted January 5, 2009, by George Rogers of Basye, Virginia.
 
Post-Appomattox Tragedy Monument image. Click for full size.
By George Rogers, February 14, 2009
5. Post-Appomattox Tragedy Monument
Telephoto Close-Up of Monument Inscription image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, September 26, 2006
6. Telephoto Close-Up of Monument Inscription
Post-Appomattox Tragedy walkway to Monument image. Click for full size.
By George Rogers
7. Post-Appomattox Tragedy walkway to Monument
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on October 18, 2020. It was originally submitted on January 29, 2007, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 5,421 times since then and 138 times this year. Last updated on February 6, 2009, by Robert H. Moore, II of Winchester, Virginia. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on October 18, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.   3, 4. submitted on January 29, 2007, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.   5. submitted on February 14, 2009, by George Rogers of Basye, Virginia.   6. submitted on January 29, 2007, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.   7. submitted on February 14, 2009, by George Rogers of Basye, Virginia. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.

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Aug. 3, 2021