Mid-afternoon on August 28, 1862, Union soldiers from General Rufus King's division rest along Pageland Lane awaiting orders for them to continue marching south seven miles to Manassas Junction.
Late afternoon, orders arrived prompting King to return to the Warrenton Turnpike (modern Route 29), and proceed east toward Cenreville. The march resumed to located and defeat the elusive "Stonewall" Jackson who was operating in the Union rear with half the Confederate army.
After the head of King's column had reached the village of Groveton, Jackson made his presence known by sending out his artillery to fire down upon the moving column. Brigadier General John Gibbon's brigade then turned to fight a fierce twilight battle near the Brawner farm house that began the three-day battle of Second Manassas.
Brigadier General Rufus King
When Jackson's artillery fired on King's column, King and his aides were enjoying a picnic meal beside a pond near the road intersection. During the excitement, King suffered an epileptic seizure, resulting in his four brigades being thrown into battle without an overall commander.