Guarding the Potomac

Guarding the Potomac (HM1BPM)

Location: Alexandria, VA 22314
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 47.77', W 77° 2.53'

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Battery Rodgers 1863-1865

The area around Jones Point, which lies just south of the nation's capital, was an obvious location for early defensive fortifications. During the Civil War (1861-1865), Battery Rodgers was built overlooking the cove to guard the river approach to Washington. The battery also commanded the southern approaches to Alexandria by covering the Accotink Road (modern Fort Hunt Road). Though no visible remains of Battery Rodgers exist today, the complex once included the fortification, barracks, hospital and a slaughterhouse built especially to feed troops in Alexandria.

(side panel)
(Battery Rodgers) was arranged to throw its principal fire at any vessel attempting to pass up the river at a range of 600 yards... —General J.G. Barnard

(background) Battery Rodgers was powerfully equipped with five 200-pound Parrott rifles and one 15-inch Rodman gun, but no shots—or men—were ever fired on enemy ships by its guns.

This view of the battery shows the 15-inch Rodman gun and the powder magazines overlooking Battery Cove. In 1911, the cove was filled in by the Army Corps of Engineers, creating 46.5 acres of new land, including the spot on which you're standing. The battery is thought to have been just up the hill to the right.

(top right) Visitors posing with—and in—the Rodman gun, circa 1863-1865 Image courtesy of the National Archives and Records Administration
Year Placed2012
Placed ByNational Park Service
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Tuesday, September 30th, 2014 at 4:48pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 322650 N 4296138
Decimal Degrees38.79616667, -77.04216667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 47.77', W 77° 2.53'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 47' 46.20" N, 77° 2' 31.80" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)202, 703, 571
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 636 Mt Vernon Trail, Alexandria VA 22314, US
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