Spotsylvania in Spotsylvania County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
The Battle of Spotsylvania Courthouse
[The] Federal assaults were not only easily repulsed, but the forces making them were simply slaughtered. Private John Coxe, 2nd South Carolina Infantry
Before you lies Laurel Hill, one of the most important but least understood areas of the Spotsylvania Court House battlefield. On three separate days—May 8, 10, and12—Union troops charged across these fields, from right to left, in an effort to break the Confederate army’s hold on the wooded ridge to your left. Each attack ended in bloody failure. With each repulse, the Union soldiers’ enthusiasm for attacking the ridge diminished. “Every man in the ranks saw the folly of the attempt,” wrote a soldier in the 83rd Pennsylvania Volunteers, “and judging from the undercurrent of their conversation, it is not probable that they would have made a very determined effort, or gone far.”
In all, some 5,000 Union soldiers fell here—all to no purpose. On May 13, the Union army abandoned Laurel Hill and headed east. The Confederates followed.
Union troops at Laurel Hill
Erected by Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park.
Location. 38° 13.076′ N, 77° 36.874′ Touch for map. 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. The Race for Spotsylvania Court House (here, next to this marker); Sedgwick (a few steps from this marker); Spotsylvania Campaign (a few steps from this marker); a different marker also named Spotsylvania Campaign (a few steps from this marker); The Death of Sedgwick (within shouting distance of this marker); A Different Kind of War (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Testing the Line: May 8-10 (about 400 feet away); The Battle of Spotsylvania (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Spotsylvania.
Also see . . . Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park. (Submitted on June 24, 2013.)
Categories. • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on June 24, 2013, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 488 times since then and 30 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on June 24, 2013, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.