Yorktown (HM6PU)

Location: Yorktown, VA 23690 York County
Country: United States of America

N 37° 13.417', W 76° 30.85'

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The Frowning Fortress of York

— 1862 Peninsula Campaign —

"It did not seem possible that both armies could gather inspiration from the historic memories that cluster around this memorable field. The traditions of the revolution lingered here awakening in all loyal breasts sincerest hopes for the future." - Eugene Nash, 44th New York Volunteers

The trench line to your right is all that remains of a formidable line of Confederate earthworks that once blocked this historic road and the Union army's advance westward past Yorktown in 1862. The Confederate defensive works surrounding Yorktown, which could be seen from this spot in 1862, still exist in a relatively untouched state.

On April 5, 1862, the Army of the Potomac's 3rd Corps advanced against Yorktown along the York-Hampton Road, hoping for a victory to end the Civil War as Gen. George Washington's victory here 81 years earlier had ended the American Revolution. They traveled the same road British forces in 1781 had walked out of Yorktown on to surrender to Washington's army.

With projections of over 100,000 troops holding the Confederate's massive earthworks, Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan, USA, decided to besiege Yorktown. While minor skirmishing and engagements between field batteries occurred almost daily, most of the Union army's efforts were on building siege works. By May 3 more heavy artillery was aimed on Yorktown than had ever been massed in a single spot to that time in world history. That night, Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, CSA, who in mid-April had assumed command of Confederate forces, decided his troops could not withstand the Union bombardment and withdrew his forces. On the morning of May 4 the Army of the Potomac took possession of Yorktown, retaining control of the area for the remainder of the war.
HM NumberHM6PU
Series This marker is part of the Virginia Civil War Trails series
Placed ByVirginia Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, September 24th, 2014 at 5:21pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 365666 N 4120753
Decimal Degrees37.22361667, -76.51416667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 37° 13.417', W 76° 30.85'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds37° 13' 25.02" N, 76° 30' 51.00" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)757
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 1600-1698 VA-238, Yorktown VA 23690, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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