Defending the Cannon

Defending the Cannon (HM1S70)

Location: Manassas, VA 20109 Prince William County
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 48.579', W 77° 31.982'

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Second Battle of Manassas

— Day Three August 30, 1862 5:30 p.m. —

As the Ohioans strived to delay the Confederates, Federal reinforcements rushed to Chinn Ridge in support. With these troops came the 5th Battery, Maine Light Artillery, under the temporary command of Lt. William F. Twitchell. The five guns unlimbered here atop the ridge, but the retreating Ohioans momentarily obstructed their field of fire.

With the onrushing Confederates nearly upon them, the battery unleashed a thunderous volley of canister that "seemed to shake the very Earth." The blast caused the Confederate line to shudder. Colonel Frederick Skinner of the 1st Virginia Infantry rode into the maelstrom wielding his sword. Following his example, the Confederates swarmed the battery and captured four of the cannon.

The fighting swirled around the guns for the next thirty minutes. This stubborn pocket of resistance caused the Confederates many lives and valuable time. Meanwhile, Federal reserves assembled in the rear to stave off disaster. By the time Confederate forces overcame Union opposition on Chinn Ridge, fresh Federal troops were waiting along Sudley Road and on the slopes of Henry Hill.
HM NumberHM1S70
Placed ByManassas National Battlefield Park, National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, May 13th, 2016 at 9:02am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 280058 N 4298701
Decimal Degrees38.80965000, -77.53303333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 48.579', W 77° 31.982'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 48' 34.74" N, 77° 31' 58.92" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)703, 571
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling South
Closest Postal AddressAt or near Unnamed Road, Manassas VA 20109, US
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