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Near Manassas in Prince William County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Fight at the Fence Line

Second Battle of Manassas

 

— Day Three August 30, 1862 4:30 p.m. —

 
Fight at the Fence Line Marker image. Click for full size.
By Shane Oliver, April 30, 2016
1. Fight at the Fence Line Marker
Inscription.  Colonel Nathaniel McLean braced his men for the coming onslaught. The Union officer, a civilian attorney with no prewar military background, commanded 1,200 Ohioans on Chinn Ridge. The ground directly in front of his brigade was open at the time of the battle and McLean's men could see the approaching enemy. At this moment only the Ohioans stood between the Confederates and Henry Hill.

The Confederate attack soon drew the attention of Federal artillery north of the Warrenton Turnpike. To avoid this raking cannon fire, some of the advancing troops crowded into the woods to your far left front. Rather than continue straight ahead into McLean's waiting guns, the weight of the Confederate attack now fell upon the Ohioan's left flank. McLean's line was caught in a devastating crossfire and quickly crumbled.

In desperation McLean ordered two of his regiments to change front and reform at the fence line. By this point Confederate forces were sweeping onto the Chinn farm. As they surged past the Chinn house, McLean's brave remnant rose and fired. Their concentrated volley struck the Confederates like a shock wave. For ten minutes
The battle of Groveton or Second Bull Run image. Click for full size.
By Edwin Forbes, August 30, 1862
2. The battle of Groveton or Second Bull Run
Library of Congress [LC-DIG-ppmsca-22377]
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deafening musketry continued until overwhelming numbers forced the Ohioans back along the ridge.
 
Erected by Manassas National Battlefield Park, National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. A significant historical date for this entry is August 30, 1862.
 
Location. 38° 48.465′ N, 77° 32.099′ W. Marker is near Manassas, Virginia, in Prince William County. Marker can be reached from Sudley Road (Virginia Route 234) half a mile south of Lee Highway (U.S. 29), on the right when traveling south. Marker is located along the Chinn Ridge Trail (Driving Tour Stop 10) 400 ft north of the parking lot. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 6511 Sudley Rd, Manassas VA 20109, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. 73rd Ohio Infantry (here, next to this marker); Kemper's Brigade (within shouting distance of this marker); Chinn Ridge (within shouting distance of this marker); Second Brigade (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Hazel Plain (about 500 feet away); a different marker also named Kemper's Brigade (about 600 feet away); Defending the Cannon (approx. 0.2 miles away); a different marker also named Defending the Cannon (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Manassas.
 
Also see . . .
Chinn Ridge Trail image. Click for full size.
By Shane Oliver
3. Chinn Ridge Trail
This 1-mile trail follows an old NPS access road to the top of Chinn Ridge.
 Manassas National Battlefield Park. National Park Service (Submitted on May 13, 2016.) 
 
Restored Fence Line on Chinn Ridge Trail. image. Click for full size.
By Shane Oliver
4. Restored Fence Line on Chinn Ridge Trail.
Fight at the Fence Line position image. Click for full size.
By Bradley Owen, October 20, 2016
5. Fight at the Fence Line position
This view is looking south from the position of the marker, the position of the Union line.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 28, 2021. It was originally submitted on May 12, 2016, by Shane Oliver of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 369 times since then and 20 times this year. Last updated on April 26, 2021, by Bradley Owen of Morgantown, West Virginia. Photos:   1. submitted on May 12, 2016, by Shane Oliver of Richmond, Virginia.   2. submitted on May 13, 2016.   3, 4. submitted on May 12, 2016, by Shane Oliver of Richmond, Virginia.   5. submitted on April 25, 2021, by Bradley Owen of Morgantown, West Virginia. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.

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May. 14, 2021