Petersburg, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
- Col. Charles Wainwright, USA, June 18, 1864
Re-created here are samples of some of the infantry earthworks that ringed Petersburg – works that one man said made the landscape resemble “an immense prairie dog village.”
As the siege wore on, assaults against entrenched positions became rare. Most of the pitched battles at Petersburg took place beyond the flanks of the armies, as the Federals inexorably pushed westward to cut the rail lines and roads into the city.
Erected by Petersburg National Battlefield - National Park Service - Dept. of the Interior.
Location. 37° 13.96′ N, 77° 21.27′ W. Marker is in Petersburg, Virginia. Marker is on Siege Road, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in Petersburg National Battlefield. It is located at Tour Stop 3. Marker is in this post office area: Petersburg VA 23803, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance Prince George Court House Road (here, next to this marker); Monotonous Toil (a few steps from this marker); “A Splendid Charge” (a few steps from this marker); U.S. Colored Troops (within shouting distance of this marker); Battery 8 of the Dimmock Line (approx. 0.3 miles away); Dividing Point (approx. half a mile away); Confederate Battery 6 (approx. 0.7 miles away); Jordon Family Cemetery (approx. ¾ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Petersburg.
More about this marker. The left portion of the marker contains a sketch of fortifications with the caption The pickets gave warning of attack. Obstructions like abatis, fraises, and chevaux-de-frise were designed to slow an enemy advance. Infantry in the earthworks and artillery in nearby batteries and forts could then decimate the attacking lines.
The right side of the marker is a drawing of trench fortifications with the caption The trenches offered little shelter from the weather. In this 1864 sketch (below), troops huddle under makeshift shade shelters.
Also see . . .
1. Petersburg National Battlefield. National Park Service. (Submitted on April 13, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
2. The Siege of Petersburg (Submitted on April 13, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
3. Civil War Fortification Study Group. (Submitted on October 31, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
Categories. • War, US Civil •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on April 13, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,246 times since then and 17 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on April 13, 2008, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. submitted on October 31, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.