Sacred Ground-Part 18

Civil War cannonFrom this vantage point you could see all the way to “The Cornfield” and, if there hadn’t been a modern farm located south of “The Cornfield”, you could have seen the Dunker Church.  Also, if you looked to the west you could see Nicodemus Heights, a bare flat hilltop about a mile in the distance. Here Jeb Stuart’s cannon created a cross fire with the 5 Confederate artillery batteries located on a hilltop across the Hagerstown Pike from the Dunker Church.  At the beginning of the battle they created havoc with the Union 1st Corps that had begun their attack from the North Woods.



I looked over the open area that the Union soldiers traversed in their move south against the Confederate positions.  They were sitting ducks.  Confederate artillery barrages torn into their right flank and hit them head on, but they just kept moving south.  They reached “The Cornfield” and started moving down the rows of corn, when Lawton’s Georgia Regiments stood up and fired down the rows killing and wounding men by the score.


Union Cannon were brought in the open fields over which the Northern soldiers had already moved and started to fire into the Confederate lines. There were repeated attacks back and forth through “The Cornfield” by both North and South during the early morning of the battle.  It was said by the end of the day that all of 7 foot high stalks of corn had been leveled as if a knife had cut them all down at ground level.


It was a blood bath.


Nancy and I after viewing the panorama continued our walk. We left the North Woods and continued toward the East Woods.

About Civil War Reflections

Vernon has been a Civil War buff since childhood, but had been inactive in Civil War history for over two decades. However, in the early 1990s his interest was rekindled after watching Ken Burns’ “Civil War Documentary” on PBS. He particularly became interested in the Battle of Antietam (Sharpsburg) and decided to learn more about this epic struggle.
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