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

Confederate Leaders at Ball's Hill

 
 
The South Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Craig Swain, July 30, 2007
1. The South Marker
Inscription.  
Colonel Nathan Evans
A descendant of Welsh nobility, "Shanks" Evans was born in South Carolina in 1824. He was graduated from West Point in 1848 and served with distinction fighting the Plains Indians. In one day in hand-to-hand combat, he killed two Kiowa war chiefs. At First Manassas, his brilliant delaying action enabled Stonewall Jackson to make his famous stand. At Ball's Bluff, he was overall commander and severely defeated the array of Union forces sent against him. For this he received promotion to Brigadier General and the thanks of the Confederate Congress. He served at 2nd Manassas, South Mountain and Sharpsburg. Transferring to the west, he served in the Vicksburg Campaign and then in the defense of his native South Carolina. He died in 1868 from war injuries received in 1864.

Colonel Eppa Hunton
Born in Fauquier County in 1822, he became a schoolteacher, lawyer, politician, and militia general before the Civil War. He commanded the 8th Virginia Infantry at 1st Manassas. At Ball's Bluff, he assumed tactical command of the Confederate forces around the Jackson House. His excellent eye for terrain

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and battle experience enabled him to produce a tactical masterpiece of double envelopment of the Union forces. He fought in the Seven days, Sharpsburg and Fredericksburg battles. During Pickett's Charge at Gettysburg, he was seriously wounded. He received his promotion to Brigadier General and brigade commander after that and fought excellently until captured at Sailor's Creek on April 6, 1865. After the war, he became a lawyer, U.S. congressman, U.S. senator and the only southerner on the electoral commission which settled the disputed Hayes-Tilden presidential election of 1876. He died in 1908.

Colonel Winfield Featherston
By the time the Civil War erupted in 1861, Winfield Featherston was already a veteran of the Creek Indian Wars and of fourteen years as a Mississippi Congressman, in Washington. At Ball's Bluff, he led the 17th Mississippi Infantry Regiment with a battle cry of "Charge Mississippians, Charge, Drive them into the Potomac or into eternity." His men captured the James Rifle artillery piece. He saw outstanding service in the Peninsula Campaign, the Seven Days, Second Manassas, and Fredericksburg battles. Transferred to the western theater, he participated with valor from Vicksburg to Atlanta to Nashville to Bentonville. After the war, he served in the Mississippi state legislature then died in 1891 just after participating in the state's 1890

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constitutional convention.

Colonel Elijah White
Born in Poolesville, Maryland, in 1832, White attended Granville College and then fought in the border wars in "bleeding" Kansas. A member of the Loudoun County militia prior to the Civil War, he was engaged at Ball's Bluff as a civilian scout and courier and eventually captured some 300 Union soldiers along the Potomac River bank in the darkness after the battle. During the war, he bravely commanded the 35th Virginia Cavalry Battalion better known as "White Comanches." His charge and capture of the 6th New York independent Artillery (a unit that fought here at Ball's Bluff) at Brandy Station was superb. After the war, he became a successful Leesburg banker, farmer and sheriff and was active in postwar Confederate veterans' activities. He died in 1907 and is buried in Union Cemetery in Loudoun.

Colonel Erasmus Burt
Born in South Carolina, at the time of the Civil War Burt was the Mississippi State Auditor and was known as the "Father of the Deaf and Dumb Institute of Mississippi." He led his 18th Mississippi Infantry Regiment to limited action at First Manassas. Here at Balls Bluff, he commanded his regiment on horseback, leading them from Fort Evans to Ball's Bluff. Upon arriving at the "Cleared Field" late on the afternoon of October 21, 1861, the 18th Mississippi deployed from columns of four into line of battle. They then charged the two howitzers and the 15th Massachusetts. Colonel Burt was mortally wounded with grapeshot in the lower abdomen and died five days later in Leesburg.

Colonel Walter Jenifer
Born in St. Mary's County, Maryland, in 1823, Jenifer attended West Point and then served in the U.S. Cavalry in 1847-48 and 1855-61. At the start of the Civil War, he was commissioned in the Provincial Army of the Confederate States. At Ball's Bluff, he was outstanding in command of the Confederate cavalry's attack at the Jackson House in the late morning and in enveloping the Union right flank between noon and dusk. He went on to develop the Jenifer saddle for the Confederate cavalry. His war service took him to southwestern Virginia, to Richmond as an Inspector General of Cavalry and, at the end of the war, to the Confederate defenses at Mobile, Alabama. After the war, he served in the Egyptian army. He died in Richmond in 1878. In an era of horsemen, he was known as exceptional.

Captain William Duff
Born in Mississippi in 1843, Duff attended the University of Mississippi before leaving to join the Confederate Army. His unit (Company K - The Magnolia Guard, 17th Mississippi Infantry Regiment) saw limited combat at First Manassas. Vigilant here at Ball's Bluff, he surprised and defeated a vastly superior force of the 15th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment under Colonel Devens in the field below Jackson House early in the morning of October 21. He was reported to have maintained his soldierly bearing and his demeanor while notifying Colonel Evans of the Union crossing and partaking in the defeat of Union forces at the Jackson House around noon and later at Ball's Bluff. Promoted to major in 1862, he was wounded in the Chancellorsville Campaign. He later commanded the 8th Mississippi Cavalry.
 
Erected by Ball's Bluff Regional Park/Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. A significant historical date for this entry is April 6, 1865.
 
Location. This marker has been replaced by another marker nearby. It was located near 39° 7.915′ N, 77° 31.676′ W. Marker was in Leesburg, Virginia, in Loudoun County. Marker could be reached from Balls Bluff Park east of Balls Bluff Road, on the right when traveling west. 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 walking distance of this location. The South: Confederate Leaders at Ball’s Bluff (here, next to this marker); The North: Union Leaders at Ball's Bluff (here, next to this marker); Battle of Ball's Bluff, October 21, 1861 (here, next to this marker); Thomas Clinton Lovett Hatcher (here, next to this marker); First Black Combatant of the Civil War (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named The North: Union Leaders at Ball's Bluff (a few steps from this marker); Clinton Hatcher (a few steps from this marker); 13 Pounder "James Rifle" (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Leesburg.
 
Related marker. Click here for another marker that is related to this marker. This marker was replaced with the linked marker.

 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on March 7, 2021. It was originally submitted on March 7, 2021, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 171 times since then and 28 times this year. Photo   1. submitted on August 31, 2007, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.

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Jul. 24, 2024