Williamsburg, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Battle of Williamsburg
The Bloody Ravine
—1862 Peninsula Campaign —
The battle began when Union Gen. George B.McClellan’s Army of the Potomac encountered the rear guard of Confederate Gen. Joseph E. Johnston’s army retreating up the Peninsula toward Richmond. The Confederates intended to fight a delaying action, but it soon escalated into a major engagement. By 8 A.M., Union Gen. Joseph Hooker’s attack on Fort Magruder had spread to this position, and intense fighting against Confederate Gen. Cadmus M. Wilcox’s brigade occurred in this valley, which was later called the “bloody ravine.”
By midday, Confederate field commander Gen. James Longstreet had committed the reserves. Virginia regiments under Gens. A.P. Hill and George Pickett advanced from Redoubts 2, 3, and 4, near the modern hotels directly in front of you and forced the Federals back to where you are standing. At 3 P.M., Union Gen. Philip Kearny arrived with reinforcements
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Virginia Civil War Trails marker series.
Location. 37° 15.594′ N, 76° 40.409′ W. Marker is in Williamsburg, Virginia. Marker is on Pocahontas Trail (U.S. 60), on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Williamsburg VA 23185, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Magruder’s Defenses (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); a different marker also named Battle of Williamsburg (about 500 feet away); Peninsula Campaign (approx. 0.4 miles away); Quarterpath Road (approx. 0.4 miles away); History of Fort Magruder (approx. 0.4 miles away); Fort Magruder Fort Magruder (approx. half a mile away); Vineyard Tract (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Williamsburg.
More about this marker. The marker contains two pictures depicted by Alfred R. Waud. – Courtesy Library of Congress. The bottom left of the marker contains a picture of “Hooker’s division engaging at Williamsburg, from Union lines” and in a picture at the top of the marker, “Kearny leads reinforcements in the rain at Williamsburg.”
The top right of the marker features a battle map showing troop movements during the May 5, 1862 Battle of Williamsburg.
Also see . . .
1. Battle of Williamsburg, 5 May 1862. Williamsburg was the first large battlefield encounter between Union and Confederate forces during the Peninsula Campaign of 1862. (Submitted on August 17, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
2. The Peninsula Campaign of 1862. (Submitted on August 17, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
3. Tidewater Virginia, The 1862 Peninsula Campaign. Civil War Traveler. (Submitted on August 17, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
Categories. • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 17, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 2,884 times since then and 59 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on August 17, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.