Slaughter Pen Farm

Slaughter Pen Farm (HMDXZ)

Location: Fredericksburg, VA 22408
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 15.753', W 77° 26.565'

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Into the Field

You are standing near the center of the most successful Union attack at the Battle of Fredericksburg. Two Union divisions, Gen. George G. Meade's on your left and Gen. John Gibbon's on your right, advanced into this field and soon encountered the "Virginia ditch fence" visible on your right and left. The ditch fences, dug by farmers to divide their fields and to promote drainage, were much steeper, deeper, and wider during the battle. Union soldiers scrambled across this and other obstacles however they could.

After Union troops crossed the ditch fences, converging Confederate artillery fire stopped them cold. The Federals laid down in the fields in front of you as Union cannons replied in kind. Both sides suffered heavy losses in men, horses, and equipment. When the fire was too hot for the men of one Confederate battery, its commander "wrapped his battle flag around him, walking up and down among his deserted guns" to shame his gunners back into position.

"The trees around our guns were literally torn to pieces and the ground plowed up. I have been several times covered with dirt, and had it knocked in my eyes and mouth."
- "Ben," Pee Dee (South Carolina) Artillery, CSA

"Being no breeze to carry away the smoke of our guns, the gunners on firing would quickly run to either flank to clear the great volume of smoke hanging in front of their muzzles that they might see where their shells were going."
- Pvt. Bates Alexander. 7th Pennsylvania Reserves, USA
Series This marker is part of the Virginia Civil War Trails series
Year Placed2009
Placed ByCivil War Preservation Trust and Virginia Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Thursday, September 18th, 2014 at 11:50pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 286284 N 4237768
Decimal Degrees38.26255000, -77.44275000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 15.753', W 77° 26.565'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 15' 45.18" N, 77° 26' 33.90" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)540, 804
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 11232 Tidewater Trail, Fredericksburg VA 22408, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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