Fight at the Fence Line

Fight at the Fence Line (HM1S76)

Location: Manassas, VA 20109 Prince William County
Country: United States of America

N 38° 48.465', W 77° 32.099'

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Second Battle of Manassas

— Day Three August 30, 1862 4:30 p.m. —

Colonel Nathaniel McLean braced his men for the coming onslaught. The Union officer, a civilian attorney with no prewar military background, commanded 1,200 Ohioans on Chinn Ridge. The ground directly in front of his brigade was open at the time of the battle and McLean's men could see the approaching enemy. At this moment only the Ohioans stood between the Confederates and Henry Hill.

The Confederate attack soon drew the attention of Federal artillery north of the Warrenton Turnpike. To avoid this raking cannon fire, some of the advancing troops crowded into the woods to your far left front. Rather than continue straight ahead into McLean's waiting guns, the weight of the Confederate attack now fell upon the Ohioan's left flank. McLean's line was caught in a devastating crossfire and quickly crumbled.

In desperation McLean ordered two of his regiments to change front and reform at the fence line. By this point Confederate forces were sweeping onto the Chinn farm. As they surged past the Chinn house, McLean's brave remnant rose and fired. Their concentrated volley struck the Confederates like a shock wave. For ten minutes deafening musketry continued until overwhelming numbers forced the Ohioans back along the ridge.
HM NumberHM1S76
Placed ByManassas National Battlefield Park, National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, May 13th, 2016 at 9:04am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 279883 N 4298495
Decimal Degrees38.80775000, -77.53498333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 48.465', W 77° 32.099'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 48' 27.9" N, 77° 32' 5.94" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)703, 571
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling South
Closest Postal AddressAt or near Unnamed Road, Manassas VA 20109, US
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Nearby Markersshow on map
73rd Ohio Infantry
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Kemper's Brigade
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Chinn Ridge
0.05 miles
Fight at the Fenceline
0.06 miles
Second Brigade
0.09 miles
Hazel Plain
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Kemper's Brigade
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Defending the Cannon
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Defending the Cannon
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Third Brigade
0.21 miles
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