Fort Fisher Hero

Fort Fisher Hero (HM1C3U)

Location: Ayden, NC 28513 Pitt County
Country: United States of America

N 35° 29.088', W 77° 22.531'

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Christopher Columbus Bland

A hero of the fight for Fort Fisher is buried here in the churchyard. Pvt. Christopher C. "Kit" Bland, Battery K, 2nd North Carolina Artillery, was serving at the fort, the "Gibraltar of the Confederacy," when Federal forces began their bombardment on December 24, 1864. The Union fleet concentrated its fire on the garrison flag flying over Battery Pulpit, headquarters of Col. William Lamb, the fort's commander. Lamb, hoping to refocus the bombardment to a point less essential to the post's defense, ordered Mound Battery, at the southern end of the fort, to raise the flag. When Capt. Daniel Munn, commanding there, asked for a volunteer, Bland stepped forward. He climbed the bare flagpole amid the shelling and tied the flag to the top. As Lamb had hoped, much of the Federal fire shifted to Mound Battery, eventually tearing the flag loose. Once again, to the admiration of all who saw it, Bland climbed the pole and secured the flag using his neckerchief. On his way down, a shell passed so close to him that it brushed his hair.

Bland survived the day unscathed but suffered a wound in the ankle from shell fragment during the second major Union attack on Fort Fisher on January 13, 1865. He was captured five days later. His ankle, badly cut and broken, became infected while he was confined, and his leg was amputated below the knee. Again, he had survived and became the pastor here in his later years. In January 1995, Sons of Confederate Veterans awarded Bland the "Confederate Medal of Honor."

The funding for this project was provided by the North Carolina Department of Transportation through the Transportation Enhancement Program of the Federal Transportation Efficiency Act for the 21st Century.

(upper left) Christopher C. Bland Courtesy Bill Bland
(upper right) Mound Battery, Fort Fisher, with flagpole - Courtesy Library of Congress
HM NumberHM1C3U
Series This marker is part of the North Carolina Civil War Trails series, and the Sons of Confederate Veterans/United Confederate Veterans series.
Placed ByNorth Carolina Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, October 13th, 2014 at 10:10am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 284496 N 3929401
Decimal Degrees35.48480000, -77.37551667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 35° 29.088', W 77° 22.531'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds35° 29' 5.28" N, 77° 22' 31.86" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)252
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 3628 State Rd 1723, Ayden NC 28513, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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