In 1861, small farms surrounded Bull Run. Small roads were the main transportation routes to the Warrenton Turnpike (Route 29), Sudley Road (Route 234) and the Manassas Gap Railroad. The entrance road here follows a section of a 19th-century farm lane that connected the Weir family's Liberia Plantation and the Lewis family's Portici Plantation. It was on this road that General Thomas J. Jackson led his First Virginia Brigade to the Battle of First Manassas (Bull Run) on July 21, 1861. The brigade included the 2nd, 4th, 5th, 27th, and 33rd Virginia regiments. The majority of Confederate soldiers who fought that day marched northward into battle from Blackburn Ford and Manassas Junction vicinities.
(Sidebar Quote): "Our Brigade was ordered to double-quick for about five miles...running that distance like panting dogs with flopping tongues, with our mouths and throats full of the impalpable red dust of that red clay country, thursting for water almost unto death, and worn and weary indescribably." Quotation: C.A. Fonerden described the rush to Henry Hill. He was a Corporal in the 27th Virginia Infantry, Jackson's Brigade, during the battle. From C.A. Fonerden, A Brief History of the Military Career of Carpenter's Battery, 1911.
(Sidebar): Rushing to Battle
Jackson's brigade arrived at Manassas Junction by train on the morning of July 20. Commanding Confederate General P.G.T. Beauregard deployed them between Blackburn's and Mitchell's Fords. On July 21 at 9 a.m., Beauregard sent Jackson's brigade north to respond to a report of increased gunfire. Jackson hurried his men to meet the Federal soldiers in the vicinity of Henry Hill.
About one mile before reaching Henry Hill, Jackson's soldiers passed the Pringle House (Ben Lomond). First Virginia Brigade surgeon Dr. Hunter McGuire designated the house as a hospital for casualties of the intensifying battle. Wounded soldiers were conveyed from the battlefield to the makeshift hospital along this road.