On September 14, 1862, this area was an open field belonging to George W. Padgett. A wooden, rail fence lined the road on the east. A low, stone wall bordered the field to the west. As the shattered remnants of Brigadier General Howell Cobb's force streamed up Whipp's Ravine and through the gap toward the safety of Pleasant Valley, Cobb attempted to check the retreat. He would put up a "last ditch" defense here on the summit of Crampton's Gap. With most of his troops in headlong retreat, Cobb stopped as many as he could and threw up a hastily formed line behind the stone wall. The 24th Georgia still held a position southeast of the gap along Gapland Road. They concentrated their fire on the Federals, who were pursuing the Confederates up the ravine. Suddenly the New Jersey troops, charging up the road from the southeast, hurled a deadly volley on the 24th's right flank.
The Georgians broke under pressure. Cobb, taking their colors, ordered them to make a stand. Some ignored him and continued their flight. Others stopped and formed behind the wall to wait for the Federals. They didn't have to wait long. As the head of the Union column turned the corner and approached the gap, the Federals were met by fire from Confederate muskets and two guns of the Troup Light Artillery. The artillery had just arrived on the field. The blast caught the Federals off guard. The column briefly recoiled and then moved forward again. The New Jersey Brigade's blood was up, and they were not to be denied. As the Federal tide moved inexorably forward, the New Jersey troops again turned the right flank of the Confederate line. Resistance collapsed and the remaining Confederate troops joined their comrades in headlong retreat into the valley below.
Order of Battle
Confederate States of America
Brig. Gen. Howell Cobb
16th Ga., 24th Ga., Cobb's Legion, 15th N.C., Troup Light Art.
United States of America
Col. Joseph J. Bartlett (Composite Command)
32nd N.Y., 16th N.Y., 18th N.Y., 96th Pa. & Reserves
Col. Alfred T.A. Torbet
1st N.J., 2nd N.J., 3rd N.J., 4th N.J.
Presented to the people of the United States by the Board of Directors of the Blue and Gray Education Society, Colonel William C. Lowe, President.