Respite at Smithsburg

Respite at Smithsburg (HMNB)

Location: Smithsburg, MD 21783 Washington County
Country: United States of America

N 39° 39.1908', W 77° 34.6954'

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Photo Credits: [1] DOUGLAS MOWEN  
Inscription

Gettysburg Campaign
Following a night of harassing the Confederate wagon train retreating from Gettysburg, Gen. H. Judson Kilpatrick's Union cavalry division arrived here about 9 a.m. on July 5, 1963, escorting 1,360 prisoners. Wet, tired, hungry, and covered with mud, the Federal horsemen received a jubilant Sunday reception from the citizens. Tables suddenly appeared in the streets, covered with plates of fresh bread, jellies, spreads, meats, and pies. Soldiers butchered and barbecued a cow. Gen. George A. Custer enjoyed a bountiful dinner of chicken and all the trimmings. A local band played patriotic songs such as Hail Columbia and Yankee Doodle. "It was like an oasis in the desert," reported one Federal soldier, "a green spot in the soldier's life."

Aware that Confederate cavalry lurked nearby, Kilpatrick placed guns and troopers on the three hills that commanded approaches to the town, with orders to watch the Raven Rock Road descending from South Mountain. When the van of Confederate J.E.B. Stuart's cavalry column appeared that afternoon, Stuart had to "dismount a large portion of the command, and fight from crag to crag of the mountains to dislodge the enemy."

After driving off the skirmishers, Stuart set up artillery a mile from the town. A twenty-minute exchange of cannon fire then ensued, and Confederate shells struck several houses in Smithsburg. The action ended at nightfall, with each side suffering few casualties. Kilpatrick withdrew south toward Boonsboro, while Stuart's men fanned out to protect Confederate retreat routes leading to Williamsport and the Potomac River.
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Details
HM NumberHMNB
Series This marker is part of the Maryland Civil War Trails series
Tags
Historical PeriodCivil War
Historical PlaceBattlefield
Marker TypeOther
Marker ClassHistorical Marker
Marker StyleInterpretative Marker / Sign
Placed ByMaryland Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, September 6th, 2014 at 2:20am PDT -07:00
Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 278803 N 4392425
Decimal Degrees39.65318000, -77.57825700
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 39° 39.1908', W 77° 34.6954'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds39° 39' 11.4480" N, 77° 34' 41.7252" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)301, 240
Can be seen from road?No
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 62 W Water St, Smithsburg MD 21783, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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Maintenance Issues
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