Battle of Falling Waters

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SJU5

Private
Joined
Mar 27, 2018
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216
From the Maryland side where the actual battle was fought. I’ve gone to some remote places in my time, but this might take the cake. Anyway, it is the location of where the FINAL shots were fired in the Gettysburg campaign. Looks like the American Battlefield Trust might have their eyes on it in the future. All the locals in this area had signs posted on the property that this land IS NOT HISTORICAL. Maybe they are gathering momentum to keep ABT out.

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White Flint Bill

Sergeant
Joined
Oct 9, 2017
Messages
593
Location
Southern Virginia
Enjoyed your posts. I was there recently myself, looking for the site of the 1863 battle. I found this sign, but not the historical marker shown in your other post. I was struck by all the unwelcoming signs in people's yards.

I've been researching Scales Brigade (and more specifically the 13th NC Infantry). The brigade was under the command of Colonel Lowrance at the time of the Battle of Falling Waters. This is from my notes:

On the night of the 13th the men moved out, retreating to Falling Waters, where they arrived at 10 a.m . on the 14th. There they rested a few hours while the wagon trains and artillery crossed the river. Just as the brigade proceeded to commence crossing, Federal cavalry attacked and they were ordered to support the rearguard. The men were exhausted and hungry, but they marched back bravely to face the enemy. On the orders of General Heth, Lowrance formed his battered brigade on the extreme left of the line of the rearguard. At some point Heth ordered the line to fall back, but the orders never made it to Lowrance’s Brigade. He discovered to his shock that the Confederates to his right were in full retreat, with the Federals already in his rear and between his men and the river. Lowrance ordered a retreat toward the river, which the men struck some ¾ of a mile above the bridge. As they marched toward the bridge that could carry them to Virginia, and safety, they found that the Federals were waiting in the woods through which they had to pass and they were forced to fight their way through. Many of the men were too exhausted to proceed, or unwilling to try, and about 200 were captured. Probably the entire Brigade would have been captured if not for the defensive stand of Pettigrew’s Brigade, which drove back the Yankees in a stand that cost General Pettigrew his life.

The 13th North Carolina was decimated in the Pennsylvania campaign. After their horrific losses on the first day of the battle of Gettysburg, there were probably no more 45 men available in the entire regiment for duty on the day of the disastrous charge against the Federal center on the third day. Twenty-three of the remaining men were killed, wounded or captured in that charge, and half of those who survived (only 22 men, under the command of a Captain) were captured at Falling Waters. A mere 11 men remained in the regiment when it finally re-crossed the Potomac.
 

SJU5

Private
Joined
Mar 27, 2018
Messages
216
Enjoyed your posts. I was there recently myself, looking for the site of the 1863 battle. I found this sign, but not the historical marker shown in your other post. I was struck by all the unwelcoming signs in people's yards.

I've been researching Scales Brigade (and more specifically the 13th NC Infantry). The brigade was under the command of Colonel Lowrance at the time of the Battle of Falling Waters. This is from my notes:

On the night of the 13th the men moved out, retreating to Falling Waters, where they arrived at 10 a.m . on the 14th. There they rested a few hours while the wagon trains and artillery crossed the river. Just as the brigade proceeded to commence crossing, Federal cavalry attacked and they were ordered to support the rearguard. The men were exhausted and hungry, but they marched back bravely to face the enemy. On the orders of General Heth, Lowrance formed his battered brigade on the extreme left of the line of the rearguard. At some point Heth ordered the line to fall back, but the orders never made it to Lowrance’s Brigade. He discovered to his shock that the Confederates to his right were in full retreat, with the Federals already in his rear and between his men and the river. Lowrance ordered a retreat toward the river, which the men struck some ¾ of a mile above the bridge. As they marched toward the bridge that could carry them to Virginia, and safety, they found that the Federals were waiting in the woods through which they had to pass and they were forced to fight their way through. Many of the men were too exhausted to proceed, or unwilling to try, and about 200 were captured. Probably the entire Brigade would have been captured if not for the defensive stand of Pettigrew’s Brigade, which drove back the Yankees in a stand that cost General Pettigrew his life.

The 13th North Carolina was decimated in the Pennsylvania campaign. After their horrific losses on the first day of the battle of Gettysburg, there were probably no more 45 men available in the entire regiment for duty on the day of the disastrous charge against the Federal center on the third day. Twenty-three of the remaining men were killed, wounded or captured in that charge, and half of those who survived (only 22 men, under the command of a Captain) were captured at Falling Waters. A mere 11 men remained in the regiment when it finally re-crossed the Potomac.
The sign was 50 yards east of the Donnelly House in the area marked yellow in the above battle map
 
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rpkennedy

Major
Joined
May 18, 2011
Messages
9,935
Location
Carlisle, PA
From the Maryland side where the actual battle was fought. I’ve gone to some remote places in my time, but this might take the cake. Anyway, it is the location of where the FINAL shots were fired in the Gettysburg campaign. Looks like the American Battlefield Trust might have their eyes on it in the future. All the locals in this area had signs posted on the property that this land IS NOT HISTORICAL. Maybe they are gathering momentum to keep ABT out.

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The men who fought at Manassas Gap might disagree with you about where the last shots of the campaign were fired. :wink:

Ryan
 

Scooter_B

I am jgoodguy
-:- A Mime -:-
is a terrible thing...
Don’t feed the Mime
Joined
Jun 8, 2019
Messages
207
From the Maryland side where the actual battle was fought. I’ve gone to some remote places in my time, but this might take the cake. Anyway, it is the location of where the FINAL shots were fired in the Gettysburg campaign. Looks like the American Battlefield Trust might have their eyes on it in the future. All the locals in this area had signs posted on the property that this land IS NOT HISTORICAL. Maybe they are gathering momentum to keep ABT out.

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Thanks for pics and info.
 

Eric Wittenberg

1st Lieutenant
Keeper of the Scales
Joined
Jun 2, 2013
Messages
3,503
Location
Columbus, OH
The local population along the Falling Waters Road is either very much in favor of preservation or very much against it.

In 2005, when Kent Brown's book on the retreat from Gettysburg came out, the retreat was the topic of Gettysburg College's Civil War Institute (back in the days before it became a week long snooze fest for academic historians only and amateurs like me were still welcome to be presenters). There were about 500 attendees, meaning that there were 13 busloads of people touring the retreat. Finding enough people to lead retreat tours was a challenge. For reasons that I have never understood, my bus and John Schildt's bus were tied to Brown's. Brown unloaded three full busloads of people in the soybean field shown in the first photo below the map. Of course, he had no permission to do so, and the farmer, as you might expect, was not the least, tiniest bit amused at the trampling of his crop. He appeared suddenly with a shotgun, and there was an unpleasant confrontation. He and his family have been seriously opposed to our efforts to preserve that battlefield ever since. The field shown in that first photograph is a significant portion of the battlefield that's owned by folks who are now extremely hostile to the preservation effort, and I am quite certain that Brown's insensitivity that day in 2005 is a major reason why there is so much hostility to this day.

There is a concerted effort to preserve the battlefield led by my good friend George Franks, who lives in the Daniel Donnelly house, where Pettigrew fell, and Bob Harsh, who has lived his entire life of nearly 80 years on the Falling Waters Road. They're doing great work.
 
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KianGaf

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May 29, 2019
Messages
230
Location
Dublin, Ireland
From the Maryland side where the actual battle was fought. I’ve gone to some remote places in my time, but this might take the cake. Anyway, it is the location of where the FINAL shots were fired in the Gettysburg campaign. Looks like the American Battlefield Trust might have their eyes on it in the future. All the locals in this area had signs posted on the property that this land IS NOT HISTORICAL. Maybe they are gathering momentum to keep ABT out.

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Americans should be proud of the likes of the Battlefield Trust & NPS preserving important sites for future generations. At home here I n Dublin, Ireland there is massive campaign to preserve a street in the Center of the city that was a huge part of our independence struggle but because it’s in the city center (downtown) its prime real estate for developers. The government is backing the developers and the site looks in huge risk. I hate such short sighted attitudes.
 
Joined
May 1, 2015
Messages
9,801
Location
Upstate N.Y.
Americans should be proud of the likes of the Battlefield Trust & NPS preserving important sites for future generations. At home here I n Dublin, Ireland there is massive campaign to preserve a street in the Center of the city that was a huge part of our independence struggle but because it’s in the city center (downtown) its prime real estate for developers. The government is backing the developers and the site looks in huge risk. I hate such short sighted attitudes.
Hope they leave O'Connell St.Post Office alone. Last time in Dublin was in 1967. I'm sure big changes since then.
 
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SJU5

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Joined
Mar 27, 2018
Messages
216
The local population along the Falling Waters Road is either very much in favor of preservation or very much against it.

In 2005, when Kent Brown's book on the retreat from Gettysburg came out, the retreat was the topic of Gettysburg College's Civil War Institute (back in the days before it became a week long snooze fest for academic historians only and amateurs like me were still welcome to be presenters). There were about 500 attendees, meaning that there were 13 busloads of people touring the retreat. Finding enough people to lead retreat tours was a challenge. For reasons that I have never understood, my bus and John Schildt's bus were tied to Brown's. Brown unloaded three full busloads of people in the soybean field shown in the first photo below the map. Of course, he had no permission to do so, and the farmer, as you might expect, was not the least, tiniest bit amused at the trampling of his crop. He appeared suddenly with a shotgun, and there was an unpleasant confrontation. He and his family have been seriously opposed to our efforts to preserve that battlefield ever since. The field shown in that first photograph is a significant portion of the battlefield that's owned by folks who are now extremely hostile to the preservation effort, and I am quite certain that Brown's insensitivity that day in 2005 is a major reason why there is so much hostility to this day.

There is a concerted effort to preserve the battlefield led by my good friend George Franks, who lives in the Daniel Donnelly house, where Pettigrew fell, and Bob Harsh, who has lived his entire life of nearly 80 years on the Falling Waters Road. They're doing great work.
Funny I saw George (not knowing who he was) outside of the Donnelly House, he saw me pull into the small roadway by the CWT sign and he looked at me. Not knowing or wanting any confrontation, I just turned around and left the area. I wish I had known and he might have shown me around!!!
 
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