Henry House Hill

Henry House Hill is a location near Bull Run in Virginia. Named for the house of the Henry family that sits atop it, the hill begins near the road of Centreville, Virginia, after Gainesville, Virginia, to the today's U.S. Route 29, the Warrenton Turnpike. It is a slow, constant rise toward the south over a length of approximately 730 meters. This hill was an important site of the battles of First and Second Bull Run (also known as First and Second Manassas) in the American Civil War. The battle raged on the north side of the hill in predominantly open grass country; the south side was relatively closely covered with trees. The hill received its name from Dr. Isaac Henry, who lived with his family in a house on the plateau of the hill. On July 21, 1861, the house was inhabited by his widow, Judith Carter Henry, and their two sons. The 85-year-old woman was bed-ridden and unable to leave the house. Mrs. Henry was mortally wounded when a projectile of the Union artillery crashed through the bedroom wall and tore off one of her feet and inflicted multiple injuries, from which she died later that day.

The photographic history of the Civil War - thousands of scenes photographed 1861-65, with text by many special authorities (1911) (14576336187)
The house after the First Battle of Bull Run.

During the First Battle of Bull Run, Brig. Gen. Thomas J. Jackson and his Confederate soldiers had taken up positions on Henry House Hill. During the battle General Jackson was pushed off of the hill many times by the 14th Brooklyn. The General gave the 14th its famous nickname, "Red Legged Devils" because of their striking red pantaloon trousers. Brig. Gen. Irvin McDowell, commander of the Federal forces, had been ordered by Abraham Lincoln to engage a large Rebel force that was led by Brig. Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard in an effort to end the Civil War with one decisive battle. Union soldiers had been ordered up the hill. Under huge amounts of enemy fire the Southerners held back the Federal soldiers with heavy losses. Brig. Gen. Barnard Bee shouted to his men, "There is Jackson standing like a stone wall. Let us determine to die here, and we will conquer. Follow me." That gave Thomas Jackson the famous nickname Stonewall. In the retreat from the hill, a Union wagon tipped over on Cub Run Bridge, blocking the Federal retreat, causing many of the undisciplined volunteers to drop their rifles and run.

Henry House Hill is preserved as part of the Manassas National Battlefield Park.

Henry House Hill, Manassas National Battlefield
Union Howitzers Henry Hill
Two Union Howitzers placed in the flanking position which they held during the Battle of First Bull Run.
LocationBull Run, Virginia
Coordinates38°48′53″N 77°31′22″W / 38.81472°N 77.52278°WCoordinates: 38°48′53″N 77°31′22″W / 38.81472°N 77.52278°W
Part ofManassas National Battlefield Park (#66000039)

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11th New York Infantry

The 11th New York Volunteer Infantry Regiment was an infantry regiment of the Union Army in the early years of the American Civil War. The regiment was organized in New York City in May 1861 as a Zouave regiment, known for its unusual dress and drill style, by Colonel Elmer E. Ellsworth, a personal friend of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln. Drawn from the ranks of the city's many volunteer fire companies, the unit was known alternately as the Ellsworth Zouaves, First Fire Zouaves, First Regiment New York Zouaves, and U.S. National Guards.The unit was among the first to occupy the territory of a Confederate state when it captured Alexandria, Virginia, on May 24, 1861, less than 24 hours after the Commonwealth seceded from the Union. The regiment suffered extensive casualties during the First Battle of Bull Run during the fighting on Henry House Hill and while serving as the rear guard for the retreating Union Army.

The regiment would later be stationed near Hampton Roads during the Peninsula Campaign, but experienced little fighting. Sent back to New York City in May 1862, the regiment was mustered out of service on June 2, 1862. There were several attempts to reorganize as a light infantry regiment through the summer of 1863, and many new enlistees were involved in suppressing the New York Draft Riots but those efforts failed and the enlistees were transferred to the 17th New York Veteran Volunteer Infantry Regiment.

14th Regiment (New York State Militia)

The 14th Regiment New York State Militia (also called the 14th Brooklyn Chasseurs) was a volunteer militia regiment from the City of Brooklyn, New York. It is primarily known for its service in the American Civil War from April 1861 to May 6, 1864, although it later served in the Spanish–American War and World War I (as part of the 106th Regiment).

In the Civil War, the regiment was made up of a majority of abolitionists from the Brooklyn area. It was led first by Colonel Alfred M. Wood and later by Colonel Edward Brush Fowler. The 14th Brooklyn was involved in heavy fighting, including most major engagements of the Eastern Theater. Their engagements included the First and Second Battles of Bull Run, the Battle of Antietam, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, The Wilderness, and Spotsylvania Court House. During the war, the men of the 14th Brooklyn were well known by both armies and throughout the country for their hard drill, hard fighting, and constant refusal to stand down from a fight. During their three years of service they never withdrew from battle in unorderly fashion.

On 7 December 1861, the State of New York officially changed the regiment's designation to the 84th New York Volunteer Infantry (and its unit histories are sometimes found under this designation). But at the unit's request and because of the fame attained by the unit at First Bull Run, the United States Army continued to refer to it as the 14th.The 14th Brooklyn received its nickname, the "Red Legged Devils", during the First Battle of Bull Run. Referring to the regiment's colorful red trousers as the regiment repeatedly charged up Henry House Hill, Confederate General Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson yelled to his men, "Hold On Boys! Here come those red legged devils again!"In the early part of the war, when the 14th Brooklyn was in General Walter Phelps' brigade, the brigade was named "Iron Brigade". It would later to become known as the "Eastern Iron Brigade" after John Gibbon's Black Hat Brigade was given the name "Western Iron Brigade". At the conclusion of the war, all members of the "Eastern" or "First" Iron Brigade were given medals for their service within the Iron Brigade.

1st Rockbridge Artillery

The 1st Rockbridge Artillery was a light artillery battery in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War.

The 1st Rockbridge Artillery were organized as part of the Stonewall Brigade in late April 1861 in Lexington, Virginia, from men of Rockbridge County. The battery fought at the First Battle of Manassas, supporting the brigade in its defense of Henry House Hill on 21 July. The battery provided artillery support for the brigade in the First Battle of Kernstown, the Battle of Port Republic, the Battle of Malvern Hill, the Second Battle of Manassas, and the Battle of Antietam. In October 1862 the 1st Rockbridge Artillery was detached from the brigade, and from that point in the war would be part of corps artillery battalions. The battery fought in the Battle of Fredericksburg, the Battle of Chancellorsville, the Battle of Gettysburg, the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House, and the Siege of Petersburg. After the Confederate abandonment of Petersburg, the 1st Rockbridge Artillery joined in the retreat and surrendered at Appomattox Court House on 9 April 1865.

21st Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry

The 21st Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry was an infantry regiment in the Union Army during the American Civil War. It was organized in Worcester, Massachusetts and mustered into service on August 23, 1861.

After garrison duty at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, the regiment served with the Coast Division commanded by Maj. Gen. Ambrose Burnside. The Coast Division was deployed in January 1862 for operations on the coast of North Carolina, and participated in the Battle of Roanoke Island and the Battle of New Bern among other engagements. Burnside's division was recalled to Virginia in July 1862. The 21st Massachusetts was then attached to the Army of the Potomac and participated in several of the largest battles of the Civil War, including the Second Battle of Bull Run, the Battle of Antietam, and the Battle of Fredericksburg. The most devastating engagement of the war for the 21st was the Battle of Chantilly, fought on September 1, 1862, during which the unit suffered 35 percent casualties. From March 1863 to January 1864, the 21st served with Burnside in the Department of the Ohio, seeing action in Kentucky and eastern Tennessee. In May 1864, the regiment rejoined the Army of the Potomac, participating in Lt. Gen. Ulysses Grant's Overland Campaign and the Siege of Petersburg. The regiment was a favorite of Clara Barton, the famed battlefield nurse, who was also from Worcester County, Massachusetts.By the end of its three years of service, the 21st Massachusetts had been reduced from 1,000 men to fewer than 100. Of these losses, 152 were killed in action or died from wounds received in action, approximately 400 were discharged due to wounds, 69 were taken prisoner, and approximately 300 were discharged due to disease, resignation, or desertion. Those of the 21st who chose to re-enlist at the end of their initial three-year commitment were eventually consolidated with the 36th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry on October 21, 1864.

33rd Virginia Infantry

The 33rd Virginia Volunteer Infantry Regiment was an infantry regiment raised in the Commonwealth of Virginia for service in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. It was a part of the famed "Stonewall Brigade," named for General Stonewall Jackson.

5th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Militia

The 5th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Militia was a peacetime infantry regiment that was activated for federal service in the Union army for three separate tours during the American Civil War. In the years immediately preceding the war and during its first term of service, the regiment consisted primarily of companies from Essex County as well as Boston and Charlestown.The regiment first served a 90-day term of service from April to July 1861. Near the end of this first enlistment, the 5th Massachusetts was heavily engaged in the First Battle of Bull Run. Their second term of service lasted 9 months from September 1862 to July 1863 during which they were stationed in New Bern, North Carolina, participated in several expeditions and saw minor combat including the Battle of Goldsboro Bridge. Their third enlistment in response to the emergency call for troops to defend Washington, D.C. lasted 100 days from July to November 1864 during which they were stationed in various fortifications around Baltimore, Maryland, primarily in Fort McHenry.

Confederate Army of the Potomac

The Confederate Army of the Potomac, whose name was short-lived, was the command under Brig. Gen. P. G. T. Beauregard in the early days of the American Civil War. Its only major combat action was the First Battle of Bull Run. Afterwards, the Army of the Shenandoah was merged into the Army of the Potomac with Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, the commander of the Shenandoah, taking command. The Army of the Potomac was renamed the Army of Northern Virginia on March 14, 1862, with Beauregard's original army eventually becoming the First Corps, Army of Northern Virginia.

Confederate Army of the Shenandoah

The Army of the Shenandoah was an army of the Confederate States of America during the American Civil War; it was organized to defend the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia in the early months of the war. The army was transferred to reinforce the Confederate Army of the Potomac at the First Battle of Bull Run, which was its only major action. After the battle, the army was merged into the Army of the Potomac.

First Battle of Bull Run

The First Battle of Bull Run (the name used by Union forces), also known as the First Battle of Manassas (the name used by Confederate forces), was the first major battle of the American Civil War and was a Confederate victory. The battle was fought on July 21, 1861 in Prince William County, Virginia, just north of the city of Manassas and about 25 miles west-southwest of Washington, D.C. The Union's forces were slow in positioning themselves, allowing Confederate reinforcements time to arrive by rail. Each side had about 18,000 poorly trained and poorly led troops in their first battle. It was a Confederate victory, followed by a disorganized retreat of the Union forces.

Just months after the start of the war at Fort Sumter, the Northern public clamored for a march against the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia, which was expected to bring an early end to the rebellion. Yielding to political pressure, Brig. Gen. Irvin McDowell led his unseasoned Union Army across Bull Run against the equally inexperienced Confederate Army of Brig. Gen. P. G. T. Beauregard camped near Manassas Junction. McDowell's ambitious plan for a surprise flank attack on the Confederate left was poorly executed by his officers and men; nevertheless, the Confederates, who had been planning to attack the Union left flank, found themselves at an initial disadvantage.

Confederate reinforcements under Brig. Gen. Joseph E. Johnston arrived from the Shenandoah Valley by railroad, and the course of the battle quickly changed. A brigade of Virginians under the relatively unknown brigadier general from the Virginia Military Institute, Thomas J. Jackson, stood its ground, which resulted in Jackson receiving his famous nickname, "Stonewall". The Confederates launched a strong counterattack, and as the Union troops began withdrawing under fire, many panicked and the retreat turned into a rout. McDowell's men frantically ran without order in the direction of Washington, D.C.

Both armies were sobered by the fierce fighting and many casualties, and realized that the war was going to be much longer and bloodier than either had anticipated. The First Battle of Bull Run highlighted many of the problems and deficiencies that were typical of the first year of the war. Units were committed piecemeal, attacks were frontal, infantry failed to protect exposed artillery, tactical intelligence was nil, and neither commander was able to employ his whole force effectively. McDowell, with 35,000 men, was only able to commit about 18,000, and the combined Confederate forces, with about 32,000 men, committed only 18,000.

Fletcher Webster

Daniel Fletcher Webster, commonly known as Fletcher Webster (July 25, 1813 in Portsmouth, New Hampshire – August 30, 1862) was the son of renowned politician Daniel Webster and Grace Fletcher Webster. He was educated at Harvard College. During his father's first term as Secretary of State, Fletcher served as Chief Clerk of the United States State Department which, at the time, was the second most powerful office in the State Department. As Chief Clerk, he delivered the news of President William Henry Harrison's death to the new President, John Tyler.

During the Civil War, Webster served as colonel of the 12th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry. The unit was known in the Army of the Potomac as "The Webster Regiment" in honor of their commander. While reinforcing Union forces attempting to repel Longstreet's counterattack, Webster was mortally wounded on Chinn Ridge in defense of Henry House Hill in the Second Battle of Bull Run on August 30, 1862. A memorial boulder stands in Manassas National Battlefield Park in Colonel Webster's honor. A memorial to the Webster Regiment stands in Gettysburg National Park.

Webster graduated Boston Latin School circa 1829 and Harvard in the class of 1833. He is memorialized on the marble PRO PATRIA shield in the lobby of the Boston Latin School.

Fletcher Webster married Caroline S. White on 11 November 1836. They raised two sons, Daniel (April 1840 - 2 September 1865) and Ashburton (7 December 1847 - 7 February 1879), and four daughters but three died in childhood. His third daughter Caroline W. Webster (24 October 1845 - 16 August 1884) married James Geddes Day.

Francis S. Bartow

Francis S. Bartow (born Francis Stebbins Bartow; September 6, 1816 – July 21, 1861) was a licensed attorney turned politician, serving two terms in the United States House of Representatives and becoming a political leader of the Confederate States of America. Bartow was also a colonel in the Georgia Militia commanding the 21st Oglethorpe Light Infantry during the early months of the American Civil War. Bartow was a delegate from Georgia's 1st congressional district to the Southern Convention in Montgomery, Alabama becoming an inaugurating member of the Confederate Provisional Congress—leading efforts to prepare defensive forces for an impending federal invasion which did occur, protracting into The American Civil War of 1861–65.

Colonel Bartow was killed at the First Battle of Manassas, becoming the first brigade commander of the Confederate States Army to die in combat.

Gods and Generals (film)

Gods and Generals is a 2003 American period war drama film written and directed by Ronald F. Maxwell. It is an adaptation of the 1996 novel of the same name by Jeffrey Shaara and prequel to Maxwell's 1993 film Gettysburg. The film stars Stephen Lang as Stonewall Jackson, Jeff Daniels as Lieutenant Colonel Joshua Chamberlain and Robert Duvall as General Robert E. Lee.

John F. Reynolds

John Fulton Reynolds (September 20, 1820 – July 1, 1863) was a career United States Army officer and a general in the American Civil War. One of the Union Army's most respected senior commanders, he played a key role in committing the Army of the Potomac to the Battle of Gettysburg and was killed at the start of the battle.

Joseph B. Kershaw

Joseph Brevard Kershaw (January 5, 1822 – April 13, 1894) was a lawyer, judge, and a Confederate general in the American Civil War.

Manassas Campaign

The Manassas Campaign was a series of military engagements in the Eastern Theater of the American Civil War.

Richard H. Anderson

Richard Heron Anderson (October 7, 1821 – June 26, 1879) was a career U.S. Army officer, fighting with distinction in the Mexican–American War. He also served as a Confederate general during the American Civil War, fighting in the Eastern Theater of the conflict and most notably during the 1864 Battle of Spotsylvania Court House. Anderson was also noted for his humility.

Second Battle of Bull Run

The Second Battle of Bull Run or Battle of Second Manassas was fought August 28–30, 1862 in Prince William County, Virginia, as part of the American Civil War. It was the culmination of the Northern Virginia Campaign waged by Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia against Union Maj. Gen. John Pope's Army of Virginia, and a battle of much larger scale and numbers than the First Battle of Bull Run (or First Manassas) fought on July 21, 1861 on the same ground.

Following a wide-ranging flanking march, Confederate Maj. Gen. Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson captured the Union supply depot at Manassas Junction, threatening Pope's line of communications with Washington, D.C. Withdrawing a few miles to the northwest, Jackson took up strong concealed defensive positions on Stony Ridge and awaited the arrival of the wing of Lee's army commanded by Maj. Gen. James Longstreet. On August 28, 1862, Jackson attacked a Union column just east of Gainesville, at Brawner's Farm, resulting in a stalemate but successfully getting Pope's attention. On that same day, Longstreet broke through light Union resistance in the Battle of Thoroughfare Gap and approached the battlefield.

Pope became convinced that he had trapped Jackson and concentrated the bulk of his army against him. On August 29, Pope launched a series of assaults against Jackson's position along an unfinished railroad grade. The attacks were repulsed with heavy casualties on both sides. At noon, Longstreet arrived on the field from Thoroughfare Gap and took position on Jackson's right flank. On August 30, Pope renewed his attacks, seemingly unaware that Longstreet was on the field. When massed Confederate artillery devastated a Union assault by Maj. Gen. Fitz John Porter's V Corps, Longstreet's wing of 25,000 men in five divisions counterattacked in the largest simultaneous mass assault of the war. The Union left flank was crushed and the army was driven back to Bull Run. Only an effective Union rear guard action prevented a replay of the First Manassas defeat. Pope's retreat to Centreville was nonetheless precipitous.Success in this battle emboldened Lee to initiate the ensuing Maryland Campaign.

Stonewall Jackson

Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson (January 21, 1824 – May 10, 1863) served as a Confederate general (1861–1863) during the American Civil War, and became one of the best-known Confederate commanders after General Robert E. Lee. Jackson played a prominent role in nearly all military engagements in the Eastern Theater of the war until his death, and played a key role in winning many significant battles.

Born in what was then part of Virginia, Jackson received an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point, served in the U.S. Army during the Mexican–American War of 1846–1848 and distinguished himself at Chapultepec (1847). From 1851 to 1863 he taught at the Virginia Military Institute, where he was unpopular with his students. During this time, he married twice. His first wife died, but his second, Mary Anna Morrison, outlived him by many years. When Virginia seceded from the Union in May 1861 after the attack on Fort Sumter (April 12, 1861), Jackson joined the Confederate Army. He distinguished himself commanding a brigade at the First Battle of Bull Run (July 21, 1861) the following month, providing crucial reinforcements and beating back a fierce Union assault. In this context Barnard Elliott Bee Jr. compared him to a "stone wall", hence his enduring nickname.

Jackson performed well in the campaigns in the Shenandoah Valley during 1862. Despite an initial defeat due largely to faulty intelligence, through swift and careful maneuvers Jackson was able to defeat three separate Union armies and prevent any of them from reinforcing General George B. McClellan's Army of the Potomac in its campaign against Richmond. Jackson then quickly moved his three divisions to reinforce General Lee's Army of Northern Virginia in defense of Richmond. His performance in the subsequent Seven Days Battles (June–July 1862) against George B. McClellan's Army of the Potomac was poor, but did not inhibit Confederate victory in the battles. During the Northern Virginia Campaign that summer, Jackson's troops captured and destroyed an important supply depot for General John Pope's Army of Virginia, and then withstood repeated assaults from Pope's troops at the Second Battle of Bull Run in August 1862. Jackson's troops played a prominent role in September's Maryland Campaign, capturing the town of Harpers Ferry, a strategic location, and providing a defense of the Confederate Army's left at Antietam on September 17, 1862. At Fredericksburg in December, Jackson's corps buckled but ultimately beat back an assault by the Union Army under Major General Ambrose Burnside.

In late April and early May 1863, faced with a larger Union army now commanded by Joseph Hooker at Chancellorsville, Lee divided his force three ways. On May 2, Jackson took his 30,000 troops and launched a surprise attack against the Union right flank, driving the opposing troops back about two miles. That evening he was accidentally shot by Confederate pickets. The general survived but lost his left arm to amputation; weakened by his wounds, he died of pneumonia eight days later.

Military historians regard Jackson as one of the most gifted tactical commanders in U.S. history. His tactics are studied even today. His death proved a severe setback for the Confederacy, affecting not only its military prospects, but also the morale of its army and the general public. After Jackson's death, his military exploits developed a legendary quality, becoming an important element of the ideology of the "Lost Cause".

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