General U.S. Grant’s Overland Campaign in Virginia May 1864 to the fall of Richmond April 1865
26th April – 4th May 2014
When U.S. Grant took command of all Union forces in early 1864, he devised a plan to put pressure on all Confederate armies in the field. His multi-pronged attack in Virginia sent Federal troops into the Shenandoah Valley and south of Richmond at Bermuda Hundred. Grant chose to accompany the Army of the Potomac.This Army crossed the Rapidan River early in May. Confronted at every river, Grant fought his way south, eventually settling into a siege outside Richmond & Petersburg. Nine and half months would pass before the rebellion would be finally brought to hand.
Day 1: (26 April): Fly into Washington Dulles Airport to met by your guide. Overnight hotel in Culpeper.
Day 2: (27 April): During the winter of 1863/64 the town of Culpeper and the surrounding area was home to many thousands of Union soldiers under the command of General Warren. We will follow Warren’s Corps along modern route 3 towards the Wilderness, crossing the Rapidan River at Germanna Ford. Our first stop will be at Warren’s headquarters, Elwood, (incidentally Stonewall Jackson’s left arm is buried in the cemetery behind the house). Advancing from Orange towards Warren’s men were Ewell’s Confederate Corps. We will examine in detail the fierce fighting in amongst the trees and on the open ground at Saunders Fields and will walk Gordon’s flank attack. Generals A.P. Hill and Longstreet in the meantime were also moving their men towards Parkers Store on the Orange Plank Road. The fighting here was also fierce with Longstreet receiving a serious wound. Overnight in Fredericksburg
Day 3: (28 April) : At the Wilderness Lee did not stop Grant and the latter withdrawing, continued his march south. The race was on. As we follow the armies the short distance to the next major engagement at Spotsylvania we stop at Todd’s Tavern where on the 6 & 7 May 1864, a cavalry engagement took place. Between the 8- 21 May, over 30,000 Americans were to become casualties in and around the Spotsylvania Battlefield. We can still walk much of the battlefield, around the ‘Mule Shoe Salient’ with the ‘Bloody Angle’ where some of the most desperate hand-to-hand fighting of the war took place. Various attacks and counter attacks took place before Grant broke off the action and continued his relentless push towards Richmond. 2nd night in Fredericksburg
Day 4: (29 April): After leaving Fredericksburg this morning and before continuing Grant’s route, we will stop at Guinea Station where in May 1863 Stonewall Jackson died after being wounded at Chancellorsville. As we leave Guinea Station our route takes us past Bethel Church (HQ of Grant), Bowling Green, Milford Station and Carmel Church. It was here that the Union Corps who had been following different routes joined up prior to crossing the North Anna River. Here on the 24/25 May the Confederates thwarted Union attacks. At Nelson’s Crossing on the Pamunkey River, the Union 11 & V1 Corps crossed. Fighting occurred at Haw’s Shop and Bethesda Church, before the Armies concentrated in the Cold Harbor area.Overnight in Richmond.
Day 5: (30 April) : This morning we will visit the NPS Richmond Battlefield centre located on the grounds of the Tredegar Ironworks. We will then drive to Cold Harbor where between 31 May & 12 June strong and in some places suicidal attacks were made by Union soldiers against well-entrenched Confederates. As at Spotsylvania Grant disengages his forces and crosses the Chickahominy River at Long Bridge. After lunch we will visit the Confederate Hospital at Chimborozo and the Museum of the Confederacy. Second night in Richmond.
Day 6: (1 May): The Union Army crossed the James River at Wilcox’s Landing by a pontoon bridge. We will continue to follow their route by joining it south of the river at Flowerdew Hundred where the Army regrouped before moving onto Petersburg. At Baylor’s Farm on the 15 June US African American troops were involved in an action here. Just to the northeast is City Point where General Grant established his headquarters and that of the Union Supply Depot during the siege of Petersburg. We end the day by visiting the Petersburg National Battlefield Centre and drive the Confederate defence lines, which in part stood strong until April of 1865. 3rd night in Richmond.
Day 7: (2 May): This morning we will drive to the Pamplin Historical Park & National Museum of the Civil War Soldier which has seven interactive galleries, extensive walking trails that lead through well-preserved trench lines and Confederate camps. An antebellum plantation house has been restored and interprets both its civilian and military wartime roles. After leaving here we will drive to Five Forks where on 1 April 1865 General Sheridan attacked Confederate troops commanded by George Pickett. He had been ordered to ‘hold at all hazards—–prevent Union forces from striking the Southside railway’. Unable to defeat the Federals, Pickett withdrew and the door to Petersburg & Richmond was finally open. Within 6 days Lee would surrender his Army at Appomattox Court House. 4th night in Richmond.
Day 8: (3 May): This morning before leaving Richmond we will visit Monument Avenue & Hollywood cemetery & on our way back to Northern Virginia we will stop at Yellow Tavern & the memorial to JEB Stuart mortally wounded in May 1864. Overnight Northern Virginia, Rosslyn.
Day 9: (4 May): This morning will be spent at Arlington Cemetery (the former home of Robert E Lee). If we have time there will be a brief driving tour of Washington DC, before driving to Washington Dulles for your early evening flight on to your home destination.
Cost per person LAND ONLY for this tour Washington to Washington is USD2,272.00 per person share twin
For your reservation call Dennis Weatherall SYD (02) 9520 6023 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Battlefields of the World – Dennis is a qualified member of the International Guild of Battlefield Guides
www.gbg-international.com Badge # 34.