Hardesty-Higgins House

Hardesty-Higgins House (HMRSX)

Location: Harrisonburg, VA 22801
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Country: United States of America
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N 38° 26.834', W 78° 52.153'

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Banks's Headquarters

This was the home of Harrisonburg's first mayor, Isaac Hardesty, an apothecary. Elected in 1849, Hardesty served until 1860. His Unionist sympathies compelled him to leave for Maryland after the Civil War began. Early in the first week of May 1862, Union Gen. Nathaniel P. Banks established his headquarters here while attempting to locate Confederate forces under Gen. Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson and Gen. Richard S. Ewell. Banks telegraphed Washington several times during his stay here, speculating on Jackson's and Ewell's whereabouts. Banks and his army departed Harrisonburg for new market on May 5, hoping to engage Jackson's Valley Army and destroy the rail and supply centers at Staunton and Charlottesville. Jackson stymied him, however, by destroying the bridges over the North River at Mount Crawford and Bridgewater, and obstructing the fords with farm harrows. Before the month ended, Jackson drive Banks from the Shenandoah Valley; in June, Jackson defeated two other Union armies to crown his Valley Campaign.

Later in the war, the Strayer sisters, whose dwelling in eastern Rockingham County had been ransacked after the Battle of Port Republic, were renting the Hardesty house when Union Gen. Philip H. Sheridan's army occupied the town in 1864. A young slave woman named Fanny, who had grown up with the sisters, cooked the soldiers' rations in exchange for a share, which she took to wounded Confederates in a nearby hospital. At the end of the occupation, Fanny and her elderly parents left for freedom with Sheridan's army.
Series This marker is part of the Virginia Civil War Trails series
Placed ByShenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation & Virginia Civil War Trails
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, October 27th, 2014 at 4:13pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17S E 685945 N 4257588
Decimal Degrees38.44723333, -78.86921667
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 38° 26.834', W 78° 52.153'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds38° 26' 50.04" N, 78° 52' 9.18" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)540
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 201-299 US-11, Harrisonburg VA 22801, US
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