Published on November 19, 2015

“... the most important battle of Jackson’s masterful 1862 Valley campaign.” -Ed Bearss

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Sketch of McDowell Battlefield by Union Sgt. Oscar D. Ladley 75th Ohio
Sketch of McDowell Battlefield by Union Sgt. Oscar D. Ladley 75th Ohio

It was across this ground and up along the Parkersburg Pike that the 82nd Ohio and the 3rd West Virginia Infantry regiments were sent by Brigadier General Robert Schenk in an attempt to turn the right flank of Jackson’s defensive line on Sitlington’s Hill.

The Ohio boys of the 82nd turned south, leaving the pike, and headed up a long draw toward the top of the hill.  The loyal Virginian’s (soon to be West Virginians) advanced further east along the pike and through the target property.

Near the eastern end of the parcel that I’m asking you to help me save, these hardy mountaineers of the 3rd West Virginia encountered those of the 31st Virginia, who steadfastly blocked their advance. Ironically, both of these regiments had companies who were originally formed in the Town of Clarksburg, Virginia (West Virginia).  When the fighting ensued, these opposing units came so close to one another on both sides that soldiers remembered recognizing old friends – friends who were now mortal enemies.  Far from home, they met along the pike with deadly purpose … brother against brother, neighbor against neighbor, in a fight that raged in the gathering darkness.

Looking East down the historic Staunton Parkersburg Turnpike in the direction the 3rd West Virginia advanced.
Looking East down the historic Staunton Parkersburg Turnpike in the direction the 3rd West Virginia advanced.

Now it’s up to us to save the place where Virginia fought Virginia as north and south battled for control of a mountain in a sea of mountains. It is up to us to save these 23 acres.

With a purchase price of $150,000, once costs associated with the transaction are met, the acquisition of McDowell will cost the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation about $160,000. We have secured a grant of $60,000 from the Commonwealth of Virginia and need to raise the balance from private supporters like you.

If you cannot give $1,000, then please consider $500!  You may even choose to commit to a monthly donation.  Just know that every dollar counts – every dollar that you give will save over 6 square feet of this battlefield! Please make a contribution and help us close this deal. Help us save the McDowell battlefield & all the battlefields of the Shenandoah Valley.

 

CWT Quote

Read the full letter from SVBF CEO Keven Walker

Read a historical sketch of the Battle at McDowell

Read a letter from the desk of Ed Bearss

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