Petersburg National Battlefield Park

I recently took a trip to explore the Eastern Front of Petersburg National Battlefield Park. This battlefield was part of a 10 month siege during the Civil War. The park itself is now owned by the National Park Service. The battlefield area has several locations spread out through Petersburg. The portion of the park I visited had several historical locations and a system of hiking trails. Along the trails, there are historical placards explaining the events that took place. I took photos of all of the signs I could find.

While hiking, I found Fort Stedman, Fort Haskell, Fort Friend, two salients and some batteries. This area is also home to The Crater. This is the location where a group of miners from Pennsylvania burrowed under Confederate troops and placed explosives under their camp. This tactic proved to be misguided, and resulted in heavy Union loses. I did not visit the crater as it was several miles away and I had already hiked 11.5 miles. I will definitely go back to find it in the future.

When I visited Petersburg National Battlefield, I started at the Fort Lee Trailhead. Please be advised that if you chose this starting point, you have to go through a security checkpoint to get onto the Army base. I had to give my SSN and show my ID. If you do not want to go onto Fort Lee, you can pick up the trails at several other locations.

About twenty miles from the Eastern Front, one of the last battles of the Civil War took place. The defeat at the Battle of Five Forks (1865) caused the Confederate Army to flee to Appomattox. The Southern Army lost the Battle of Appomattox and surrendered shortly after, ending the Civil War.



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