Toil and Mud

Toil and Mud (HMPBM)

Location: Murfreesboro, TN 37129 Rutherford County
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Country: United States of America
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N 35° 51.132', W 86° 24.618'

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For nearly five months, thousands of soldiers and African-American laborers worked around the clock to build Fortress Rosecrans - digging, shaping, and compacting the works. It was backbreaking, highly unpopular duty.

"Feb. 1, 1863. [Building fortifications] may be valuable and necessary in a military view, but our men had three objections to it today: because it was Sunday, because it was muddy and greatest because it was work.... We did not enlist to get a job of working. We expected just a big picnic with good clothes, good rations, regular pay and glory, not work and mud."
-Lyman S. Widney, 34th Illinois Infantry

The curtain wall of Fortress Rosecrans, designed to be used by infantry, included a dry ditch on its outward side and a firing step for infantrymen on the inward side. The works perpendicular to the curtain wall (running toward you) are called traverses. These were designed to prevent flanking fire from sweeping the length of the fort.

During the first four months of 1863, nearly 40,000 fighters like these men of the 21st Michigan cast aside weapons and took up shovels to help construct Fortress Rosecrans.
Placed ByStones River National Battlefield - National Park Service - U.S. Department of the Interior
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Wednesday, October 8th, 2014 at 5:29am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)16S E 553247 N 3967715
Decimal Degrees35.85220000, -86.41030000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 35° 51.132', W 86° 24.618'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds35° 51' 7.92" N, 86° 24' 37.08" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)615
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 1012 Old Fort St, Murfreesboro TN 37129, US
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