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Chancellorsville in Spotsylvania County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Bloody Morning

The Battle of Chancellorsville

 
 
Bloody Morning Marker image. Click for full size.
By Shane Oliver, October 7, 2017
1. Bloody Morning Marker
Inscription. Long after the Civil War, Sergeant Rice Bull of the 123rd New York Volunteers remembered the early morning hours of May 3, 1863. "Never was there a more beautiful sunrise," he wrote, "not a cloud in the sky. It was an ideal Sunday morning, warm and fair. It seemed to me like sacrilege that such a sacred day should be used by men to kill and maim each other." Yet kill they did. In five house of fighting, more than 17,500 soldiers were killed, wounded, or captured—one soldier for every second of combat. It was perhaps the bloodiest morning in America's history.

The most intense fighting took place in these woods. Now peaceful and still, this forest resounded with the deadly clash of arms as soldiers by the thousands killed and maimed one another among the spring's budding green foliage. The struggle was bitter, the fighting tenacious. When Union artillery at Fairview shelled the woods, the dry leaves caught fire, consuming the dead and wounded alike, adding to the morning's horror.

"The scene as I marched through the burning woods...was harrowing—unexploded shells & muskets going off in all directions, the dead of both sides enveloped in flames, the appealing cries of helpless, wounded Federals to be removed from the tracks of fire, the heavy pall of stifling sulfurous smoke, all added to the general roar of battle made it a perfect hell on earth. I do not wish to witness anything like it again."
Confederate General James Lane

(caption)
Rescuing the wounded from the burning woods
 
Erected by Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park.
 
Location. 38° 18.429′ N, 77° 39.132′ W. Marker is in Chancellorsville, Virginia, in Spotsylvania County. Marker is on Stuart Drive 0.3 miles south of Plank Road (Virginia Route 3), on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is located at Stop 9 on the Chancellorsville Battlefield Auto Tour Route. Marker is in this post office area: Spotsylvania VA 22553, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Night-time Horror (a few steps from this marker); Elisha Franklin Paxton (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Brig. Gen. E. F. Paxton, C.S.A. (approx. 0.2 miles away); Chancellorsville Campaign (approx. mile away); Hazel Grove—Fairview Trail (approx. mile away); Hazel Grove (approx. mile away); A Missed Opportunity (was approx. mile away but has been reported missing. ); A Very Hot Place (approx. mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Chancellorsville.
 
Also see . . .  Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania National Military Park. National Park Service (Submitted on January 8, 2018.) 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on January 8, 2018. This page originally submitted on January 5, 2018, by Shane Oliver of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 50 times since then. Photo   1. submitted on January 5, 2018, by Shane Oliver of Richmond, Virginia. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
 
Editor’s want-list for this marker. Wide shot of marker and its surroundings. • Can you help?
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