Battle of James City

Battle of James City (HM2M8)

Location: Culpeper, VA 22701 Madison County
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 26.26', W 78° 8.276'

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Opening Battle of the Bristoe Station Campaign

On October 10, 1863, Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee, anticipating an offensive that became known as the Bristoe Station Campaign, sent a division of Confederate horsemen led by Gen. J.E.B. Stuart north from Madison on a raid.

Confederate Gen. James B. Gordon's brigade drove Union Gen. Judson Kilpatrick's troopers from the Robinson River to Bethsaida Church. Stuart attacked and drove Kilpatrick from the field.

Stuart pursued Kilpatrick to James City while a Confederate detachment was sent to shut down a Union signal station atop Thoroughfare Mountain.

As Stuart entered the village, he encountered two of Kilpatrick's brigades and French's infantry division which commanded six pieces of artillery. As Stuart approached, the Union troops withdrew to a position across Crooked Run in Culpeper County. They drew up in line of battle on a hill overlooking James City, with their artillery ready to confront Stuart, should he advance.

Throughout the remainder of the day, the opposing batteries engaged one another. About 4 p.m. the Union cavalry charged to within 200 yards of Stuart's line, when deadly fire from Confederate sharpshooters cut them to pieces. Artillery fire continued until nightfall, leaving the inhabitants of James City caught in the crossfire. Smoke and fire settled over the village.

The Union troopers withdrew during the night, ending the battle.

This was the only instance during the war when Stuart led a force completely without Virginians.
HM NumberHM2M8
Series This marker is part of the Virginia Civil War Trails series
Placed ByVirginia Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, September 5th, 2014 at 3:12am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17S E 749804 N 4258257
Decimal Degrees38.43766667, -78.13793333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 26.26', W 78° 8.276'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 26' 15.60" N, 78° 8' 16.56" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)540, 202
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 3290-3298 State Rte 631, Culpeper VA 22701, US
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