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

Road to Yorktown

The Kings Highway

 
 
Road to Yorktown Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Kevin W., February 21, 2016
1. Road to Yorktown Marker
Inscription.  In the late 18th century, armies made the most use of the King’s Highway. Merchants preferred to move goods such as tobacco over the Potomac River since land travel was difficult. The road became a main transportation route after the Revolutionary War.

In 1781, Generals George Washington and Jean-Baptiste de Rochambeau traveled with cavalry and baggage wagons along the King’s Highway to Yorktown, Virginia. They rested and gathered supplies at Mount Vernon, then rode south on September 12, 1781. Rochambeau’s Quartermaster General wrote that after passing the Marumsco Creek “…you proceed through the woods, passing Blackburn House [Rippon Lodge] on the left.” The Generals mapped their route. One month after they traversed Prince William County, they defeated British forces at Yorktown and won America’s independence.

Improvements Needed!
General George Washington ordered Colonel Harry Lee to improve the King’s Highway in preparation for troop movement to Yorktown. In a letter dated September 17, 1781, Lee described work undertaken to accommodate the baggage train’s passage through Prince William County.
Closeup of the 1885 painting by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Kevin W., February 21, 2016
2. Closeup of the 1885 painting by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris
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He wrote that 285 militia were

…on severe duty in repairing the roads which were impassable for the Baggage Wagons, Artillery, and mounted escorts…and in a few days I am in hopes will be completely accomplished which will open a direct way from Georgetown to Dumfries and shorten the distance many miles, besides being a much better road, and well supplied with forage, being a fine fertile Country well improved with Meadows.
 
Erected by the National Museum of the Marine Corps and Prince William County.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Roads & VehiclesWar, US Revolutionary. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #01 George Washington, and the The Washington-Rochambeau Route series lists. A significant historical date for this entry is September 17, 1781.
 
Location. 38° 32.312′ N, 77° 20.68′ W. Marker is near Triangle, Virginia, in Prince William County. Marker can be reached from Jefferson Davis Highway (U.S. 1). Marker is located on the grounds of Locus Shade Park, at its boundary with the National Museum of the Marine Corps. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Triangle VA 22172, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Second Battalion First Marines Vietnam Memorial (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); America's 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marines Battalion
Closeup of the map in the lower left. image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Kevin W., February 21, 2016
3. Closeup of the map in the lower left.
The map details the route Generals Washington and Rochambeau, with their cavalry and baggage trains, traveled to their victory at Yorktown.
(about 700 feet away); Firefighter Marines 9/11 Memorial (about 700 feet away); Hotel Company 2nd Battalion 7th Marine Regiment (about 800 feet away); Marines of the 1st 155 Gun Battery SP (about 800 feet away); The Lieutenants of The Base School Class 3-67 and 41st OCC (approx. 0.2 miles away); Golf Company 2/7 (approx. 0.2 miles away); 'Staff Sergeant Reckless' (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Triangle.
 
More about this marker. On the lower left is a map detailing the route Generals Washington and Rochambeau traveled to their victory at Yorktown. The map carries the caption, "This map indicates where Generals Washington and Rochambeau encamped with their cavalry and baggage trains during the Yorktown campaign. Lines and dates mark their route to Yorktown in 1781 (red) and from Yorktown in 1782 (blue). The American and French armies traveled to Yorktown by ship." The marker identifies the source as ...the W3R Campsite map developed for the national Park Service 2000-2005 study of significance, feasibility and environmental impact.

In the upper center the marker displays a 1885 painting by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris (1863-1890), described as a "...fanciful scene, Martha and General Washington welcome the visit of General comte de Rochambeau to Mount Vernon on 10 September 1781." The marker identifies the source of this picture as, "George Washington by Herman S. Frey, Frey Enterprises, Nashville, TN 1981."
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 18, 2020. It was originally submitted on February 21, 2016, by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia. This page has been viewed 468 times since then and 41 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on February 21, 2016, by Kevin W. of Stafford, Virginia.

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Oct. 5, 2022