Navy Yard in Washington, District of Columbia — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The Leg of Colonel Ulric Dahlgren
The plaque below marks the spot where the leg of U.S. Army Colonel Ulric Dahlgren, son of Admiral John Dahlgren, "father of American naval ordnance," was interred following his wounding after the battle of Gettysburg in 1863.
The leg was enclosed in a lead and wooden box and placed in the cornerstone of Admiral Dahlgren's new foundry, building 26 which was then under construction on this site.
Colonel Dahlgren was killed in March 1864 during a failed Union cavalry raid on Richmond. Documents said to have been found on his body directed the capture or killing of Confederate President Jefferson Davis and his cabinet. Public outrage in the South over "the Dahlgren papers" set the stage for conspirators led by John Wilkes Booth to plan the kidnapping and eventually the assassination of Abraham Lincoln.
In 1915, Building 28 was demolished and replaced by a metal fabrication shop, and the plaque remained in the original wall. The building was again demolished in 1942, removing the remaining surface remnants of the 1863 foundry. The plaque was reinstalled at a higher location in the new wall. Mysteriously, Ulric Dahlgren's leg
In 1998, the plaque was recovered when the building was again demolished to construct the NavSea parking garage. The plaque now rests in its approximate original location marking the southwest corner of Admiral Dahlgren's foundry.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. A significant historical month for this entry is March 1864.
Location. 38° 52.45′ N, 76° 59.86′ W. Marker is in Navy Yard in Washington, District of Columbia. Marker is on Isaac Hull Avenue south of Tingey Street Southeast, on the left when traveling south. Located on the side of a parking garage on the Washington Navy Yard. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 108 1st Street Southeast, Washington Navy Yard DC 20374, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. 16-inch Projectiles (within shouting distance of this marker); "4-in. 40 caliber rifles" (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Frank W. Crilley Building (about 500 feet away); USS Balao (SS-285) (about 500 feet away); Washington Navy Yard Chapel (about 600 feet away); Willard Park (about 700 feet away); a different marker also named Willard Park (about 700 feet away); National Museum of the U.S. Navy (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Navy Yard.
More about this marker. At the top of the marker is a photo of the Dahlgren Foundry from 1866, looking from the northwest. At the bottom is a portrait of Colonel Ulric Dahlgren as he appeared before he lost his leg in the Gettysburg Campaign.
Also see . . . Kilpatrick-Dahlgren Raid. Encyclopedia Virginia website entry (Submitted on March 18, 2022, by Larry Gertner of New York, New York.)
Credits. This page was last revised on March 18, 2022. It was originally submitted on July 4, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 2,389 times since then and 92 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on July 4, 2010, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. 4, 5, 6. submitted on March 21, 2019, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.