“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Bristow in Prince William County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

Confederates in Bristoe

Bristoe Station

Confederates in Bristoe Marker image. Click for full size.
September 2, 2012
1. Confederates in Bristoe Marker
Inscription.  On the afternoon of August 26, 1862, about 350 yards ahead, you would have witnessed a long line of freight trains containing dusty Federal infantrymen passing from the marshalling yards of Alexandria (to your left) on their way to the Federal camps at Warrenton Junction, (14 miles to your right). These were men of Maj. Gen. Joseph Hooker’s division, III Corps, Army of the Potomac. These veteran regiments were part of the reinforcements to the Army of Virginia under Maj. Gen. Pope, who faced Gen. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia across the Rappahannock River. Only a few hours later, at dusk, the lead elements of Maj. Gen. “Stonewall” Jackson’s Left Wing of the Army of Northern Virginia arrived here via the road from Gainesville, (behind you) completing a two-day march of more than 50 miles designed to cut the Federal supply line and force Pope from his river line of defense.

After overwhelming the Federal guards, Col. Thomas Munford’s 2nd Virginia Cavalry and Col. Henry Forno’s famed Louisiana “Tiger” Brigade captured Bristoe Station. Minutes later, the empty Federal freight trains began to return from Warrenton
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Junction. The lead train escaped with only a few bullet holes, but the Confederates were ready for the next train.

The locomotive, aptly named the “President,” plunged over the embankment and lodged in the soft ground below. A third train plowed into the rear of the stalled second train and sent three cars off the track. A fourth train was able to reverse course and escape to Catlett Station with the news of the Confederate presence on the railroad. Pope did not know that Jackson’s entire force of 23,000 Confederate soldiers had gained the rear of his army.

(Sidebar): Up to this time Pope was in absolute ignorance of the dangerous position he was in. Just after we captured the place Bristoe, from some blunder about turning the switch, a train from Pope’s army got by, much to our vexation, as this might put the forces at Manassas Junction and Alexandria on their guard; but in the darkness it seems they did not realize what force we had. Capt. W.W. Blackford, CSA
Erected 2012 by Prince William County Department of Public Works, Historic Preservation Division.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: War, US Civil. A significant historical year for this entry is 1862.
Location. 38° 43.417′ N, 77° 32.721′ W. Marker is in Bristow, Virginia, in Prince
Confederates in Bristoe Marker image. Click for full size.
September 2, 2012
2. Confederates in Bristoe Marker
William County. Marker can be reached from Iron Brigade Unit Ave.. Marker is located on the 1861-1862 Trail at Bristoe Station Battlefield Heritage Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Bristow VA 20136, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. “We Shall Bag the Whole Crowd” (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Cemeteries (about 800 feet away); Here Lie Men from the State of Alabama (approx. 0.2 miles away); The "Tigers" of Louisiana (approx. 0.2 miles away); Preparing for Battle (approx. 0.2 miles away); Fight for a Pine Thicket (approx. 0.2 miles away); Alabama Cemetery (approx. 0.2 miles away); Camp Jones (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Bristow.
More about this marker. On the left of the marker is a portrait of Col. Thomas Munford Courtesy of Virginia Military Institute. In the center of the marker is a photo captioned Tracks of the Orange & Alexandria Railroad, destroyed by Confederates between Bristoe Station and the Rappahannock River. Courtesy of The Library of Congress. On the bottom left of the marker is map of Bristoe Station, 1860.
Close-up of Map on Marker image. Click for full size.
September 2, 2012
3. Close-up of Map on Marker
Davis House image. Click for full size.
September 9, 2012
4. Davis House
At the northwest corner of the tracks and Bristow Road.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 10, 2020. It was originally submitted on September 8, 2012. This page has been viewed 745 times since then and 15 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on September 9, 2012. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.

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Apr. 24, 2024