Battle of Cross Keys

Battle of Cross Keys (HMAK7)

Location: Harrisonburg, VA 22801
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 20.995', W 78° 49.533'

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Slaughter of the 8th New York Infantry

— 1862 Valley Campaign —

On June 8, 1862, during the Battle of Cross keys, Gen. Isaac R. Trimble's Confederate brigade of a little more than 1,500 men occupied this line, a masked position behind a split-rail fence in what was then a wood line to your right and left. Shortly after noon, the 548-man-strong 8th New York Infantry of Gen. Julius Stahel's brigade marched toward Trimble, but the regiment's officers failed to put a skirmish line out front to locate the Southern position. Skirmishers from the 21st North Carolina Infantry scampered back to Trimble's line to give him the news. The New Yorkers advanced blindly through a clover field in a two-line formation and over the rise just in front of you. An Alabama soldier later recalled, "Poor fellows, they did not know what was in store for them."

As the Federals came within about 50 yards of here, the Confederates rose up and unleashed volley after volley into their ranks. The 8th New York suffered more than 250 casualties in the short span of 15 minutes. One Confederate soldier wrote home that as he looked over the ground in front of him he saw dead and wounded Federals "lying in the field as thick as black birds."
HM NumberHMAK7
Series This marker is part of the Virginia Civil War Trails series
Year Placed2003
Placed ByShenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation & Virginia Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Friday, October 24th, 2014 at 12:02pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17S E 690010 N 4246877
Decimal Degrees38.34991667, -78.82555000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 20.995', W 78° 49.533'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 20' 59.70" N, 78° 49' 31.98" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)540
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 6019 Port Republic Rd, Harrisonburg VA 22801, US
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