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Fairfax Station in Fairfax County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Skirmish at St. Mary’s

Victory or Death

 

— Mosby's Confederacy —

 
Skirmish at St. Mary's Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By J. J. Prats, March 18, 2006
1. Skirmish at St. Mary's Marker
Inscription.  
Monday, August 8, 1864, was a hot and sultry day. Capt. John McMenamin of the 15th New York Volunteer Cavalry and Capt. James Fleming of the 16th New York Volunteer Cavalry had stopped at St. Mary's Church on the Ox Road (now Fairfax Station Rd.), Fairfax. Their command of 60 troopers was resting, eating supper and feeding their horses.

Shortly after 5 p.m., vedettes sounded the alarm that Confederate cavalry were approaching, coming north on the Ox Rd. (now Vogue Rd.). The Union troopers mounted their horses and formed a line of battle. The left wing was at the front door of the church, and the line extended across the Ox Rd. facing south. The Confederates proved to be 39 Partisan Rangers of the 43rd Battalion of Virginia cavalry led by Col. John S. Mosby. Mosby's men crosses the railroad tracks and rose toward the church, forming a line 150 yards south of the Federals.

Mosby rode back and forth in front of his men shouting, "Come on men, victory or death!" The Federals fired their carbines sporadically, causing several of their horses to bolt and disrupt their line. Seeing this, Mosby and his men charged with pistols
Skirmish at St. Mary’s Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Allen C. Browne, November 14, 2017
2. Skirmish at St. Mary’s Marker
with dedication plaque.
Click or scan to see
this page online
blazing. None of Mosby's men carried carbines or sabers, only six-shot revolvers. All had two, and some had four. The Union line broke and fled in disorder and was chased as far as Fairfax Courthouse. When it was over, five Union troopers were dead, including Capt. Fleming, eight were wounded and twenty were captured. Mosby also captured 39 horses. Three of Mosby's Rangers were reported wounded. Capt. Fleming is buried in an unmarked grave at the Falls Church Cemetery, Falls Church.

St. Mary's Church was built in 1858 by Catholic immigrants from Ireland.
 
Erected by 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. A significant historical year for this entry is 1864.
 
Location. 38° 48.156′ N, 77° 19.633′ W. Marker is in Fairfax Station, Virginia, in Fairfax County. Marker is on Fairfax Station Road west of Ox Road (Virginia Route 123), on the right when traveling east. Marker is at the corner of the property, facing the road and parking lot. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Fairfax Station VA 22039, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 5 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. St. Mary’s Catholic Church (within shouting distance of this marker); In this Church of St. Mary’s (within shouting distance of this
St. Mary's Catholic Church image. Click for full size.
Photographed By J. J. Prats, March 18, 2006
3. St. Mary's Catholic Church
marker); Clara H. Barton (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Welcome to Fairfax Station (approx. ¼ mile away); Hogshead (approx. ¼ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fairfax Station.
 
More about this marker. One of the "Mosby's Confederacy" series of Virginia Civil War Trails markers.
 
Memorial Dedication<br>September 28, 2002<br>Ancient Order of Hibernians image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Allen C. Browne, November 14, 2017
4. Memorial Dedication
September 28, 2002
Ancient Order of Hibernians
Fr. Corby Division No 3 AOH
Alice Hamill Division No 3 LAOH
Fairfax Station, Virginia
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 6, 2022. It was originally submitted on March 19, 2006, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 3,447 times since then and 99 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on March 19, 2006, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.   2. submitted on November 18, 2017, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.   3. submitted on March 19, 2006, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.   4. submitted on November 18, 2017, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.

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Aug. 16, 2022