Monday, September 10, 2007

News: Battle of Ball's Bluff at Leesburg, Virginia Receives New and Additional Markers and Trails

Jim Morgan, author of A Little Short of Boats: The Fights at Ball's Bluff and Edwards' Ferry, October 21-22, 1861 writes that on Saturday and Sunday, September 22 and 23, at 10:00a, the official unveiling and dedication of these new interpretive aids will occur at the Leesburg, Virginia site of the Battle of Ball's Bluff. Beginning at 9:00a and continuing to 4:00p on Saturday and 10:00a to 4:00p on Sunday, there will be a series of living history demonstrations by Union and Confederate reenactors.

"I'm delighted to announce that all the new, updated, and corrected historical markers are in. The original 16 which, even if correct, were weathered and not looking very good, have been replaced with new ones, plus four completely new signs help tell the story even better," states Morgan.

"Two new interpretive trails have been cut as well, and three of the original signs moved to new locations on them. These trails are somewhat more user friendly and on the new "Jenifer trail" the sign related to Lieutenant. Colonel Walter Jenifer, who commanded the small Confederate cavalry force, is closer to where his force actually was on the battlefield. The four completely new signs are at the Baker stone, the Hatcher stone, the bluff overlook, and in a spot roughly in the middle of the field approximately where an 1886 photo of a 15th Mass reunion was taken. It shows how the currently wooded area was actually an open meadow in 1886 and, by extension, in 1861."

"There also is a privately-funded monument to the 8th Virginia now in. Built on a square base of stone that closely resembles the stone in the cemetery wall, it has a slanted top on which sits a plaque listing the battles in which the 8th Virginia fought. It is located close to the Eppa Hunton historical marker. Because of the new sign and trail arrangement, the NVRPA is in the process of creating new trail maps and info brochures" states Morgan. It is hoped that the new signs will be added this autumn.

For those who live in the New York City area, Steve Basic reports that James Morgan will be the speaker at the December 12, 2007 meeting of the NYC Civil War Round Table. Contact Steve Basic through his email .

For additional reading: Harvard's Civil War: The History of the Twentieth Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry by Richard Miller. This regimental history is near the top of the "best of the best list" of new regimental histories read by the Civil War Librarian.

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