Friday, April 6, 2018

F is for Battle of Fredericksburg

On December 11, 1862, Union troops bombarded Fredericksburg from Stafford Heights, then crossed the Rappahannock River on pontoon bridges to confront Robert E. Lee's Confederates holding fortified high ground to the west.  On December 13, Ambrose E. Burnside's Union troops launched a two-prong attack.  On the south end of the line, they achieved a brief but bloody breakthrough against Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson's corps at Prospect Hill.  To the north, behind the town, waves of Union attackers struggled against the powerful Confederate defenses on Marye's Heights and in the Sunken Road.  The result was a resounding Confederate victory that left the fields around Fredericksburg blanketed with Union dead and wounded.

This battle is brilliantly portrayed in the movie Gods and Generals.  We visited Fredericksburg last year and walked in the footsteps of the soldiers who fought there.  It is a not be missed Virginia historical site.

The Sunken Road at Marye's Heights

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