Taylor's Tavern

Taylor's Tavern (HMRSW)

Location: Falls Church, VA 22044 Stafford County
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 52.492', W 77° 9.516'

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Inscription

Professor Lowe's Balloons

At the beginning of the war, Union commanders were uncertain of Confederate intentions and military capabilities. On June 22, 1861, civilian balloonist Thaddeus S.C. Lowe inflated his racing balloon Enterprise at the Washington Gas Company to demonstrate its potential in obtaining military information about Confederate troop movements. With the assistance of a 15-man army detachment, he walked the balloon to Taylor's Tavern at the edge of Union territory on the Falls Church heights. On June 24-25, Lowe made several tethered ascents, the first aerial reconnaissance in American military history.

Over a 34-day period in late summer, Lowe made 23 flights from Fort Corcoran and Ball's Cross Roads (present-day Ballston). These ascents drew the first rifled artillery fire at a balloon from Confederate positions. In September, he implemented another first when he used signal flags to direct artillery fire from a balloon at the area of Falls Church where Confederate J.E.B. Stuart's troops were celebrating their commander's promotion to Brigadier General. On September 29, the Confederates withdrew to the south and west.

Appointed Chief of the newly formed U.S. Army Aeronautical Corps, Lowe commanded seven balloons, eight aeronauts and 12 portable generators used to inflate the balloons. Lowe was replaced in May 1863 and the Corps rapidly disintegrated.
Details
HM NumberHMRSW
Series This marker is part of the Defenses of Washington series, and the Virginia Civil War Trails series.
Tags
Placed ByCivil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, September 1st, 2014 at 12:00am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18S E 312744 N 4305105
Decimal Degrees38.87486667, -77.15860000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 52.492', W 77° 9.516'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 52' 29.52" N, 77° 9' 30.96" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)202, 703
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 400-498 N Roosevelt St, Falls Church VA 22044, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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