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

Valuable Crossroads

Battle of the Wilderness

 
 
Valuable Crossroads Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, November 10, 2007
1. Valuable Crossroads Marker
Inscription. Just after noon on May 5, 1864, Union troops raced toward this intersection. With Confederates from General A.P. Hill's corps sweeping down the Orange Plank Road from the west, blue-clad troops under George W. Getty arrived here just moments before the Confederates. The Federals immediately started building earthworks to defend the crossroads. The remnants of those works are still visible along the Brock Road.

Later on May 5, men of the Union Second Corps launched attacks westward from these earthworks. They did not get far. About 200 yards behind you, they crashed into Hill's line, entrenched among the leaves. For the next five hours, fighting raged in these woods. Neither side gained an advantage. Thousands fell. May 6 promised a bloody renewal of the contest for the Plank Road-Brock Road intersection.
 
Erected by Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park, National Park Service, US Department of the Interior.
 
Location. 38° 18.037′ N, 77° 42.564′ W. Marker is in Spotsylvania, Virginia, in Spotsylvania County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Orange Plank Road (County Route 621) and Brock Road (County Route 613), on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Located
Valuable Crossroads Marker image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, November 10, 2007
2. Valuable Crossroads Marker
at stop eight of a driving tour of the Wilderness Battlefield, at the first stop of a loop walking trail. Marker is in this post office area: Spotsylvania VA 22551, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Horror on the Orange Plank Road (a few steps from this marker); Echoes Homeward (within shouting distance of this marker); Hell Itself (within shouting distance of this marker); The Climax (within shouting distance of this marker); No Turning Back (within shouting distance of this marker); On to Richmond! (within shouting distance of this marker); 12th Regiment New Jersey Volunteers 1862 - 1865 (within shouting distance of this marker); The Vermont Brigade (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Spotsylvania.
 
More about this marker. The background of the marker is a drawing of Federal troops fighting in the Wilderness. On the right is a photo of The Orange Plank Road soon after the war. Note the tangled growth along the roadside, which made fighting in this region especially difficult.
 
Also see . . .  Battle of Wilderness. National Park Service site provides links to a summary of the campaign, maps for driving and
Modern Day View of the Orange Plank and Brock Road Intersection image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain, November 10, 2007
3. Modern Day View of the Orange Plank and Brock Road Intersection
walking tours, and additional photos of the battlefield. (Submitted on January 26, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.) 
 
Categories. War, US Civil
 
".... Like Earthen Snakes..." image. Click for full size.
By Craig Swain
4. ".... Like Earthen Snakes..."
A segment of trenches along the Brock Road, these from Hancock's Federal Corps, are preserved near the intersection. All around the area are trenches from both the 1863 and 1864 battles fought over this terrain.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on January 26, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,300 times since then and 67 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on January 26, 2008, by Craig Swain of Leesburg, Virginia.
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