Share This Article

Two major battles were fought near Manassas, Virginia, during the war. The first occurred on July 21, 1861, and the second Aug. 28-30, 1862. The two fights resulted in close to 4,000 dead, many of whom lay in rude battlefield graves throughout the war.

Shortly after the war ended in 1865, the 5th Pennsylvania Heavy Artillery drew the unpleasant task of unearthing those dead for reburial. Moved by what they saw, the artillerymen built two monuments on the battlefield. This image was taken at the June 10, 1865, dedication of the Patriots Monument built to honor those who fell in the 1861 battle.

Soon thereafter, they built a second monument near the Deep Cut to the fallen at the Second Battle of Bull Run, or Manassas. They remain some of the oldest standing monuments on any Civil War battlefield.

Interestingly, when they were built, the artillery shells used as decoration were live! They were later replaced with inert shells on this monument, which is located on Henry Hill, and removed altogether from the second monument.

Photo Credit: Library of Congress

historynet magazines

Our 9 best-selling history titles feature in-depth storytelling and iconic imagery to engage and inform on the people, the wars, and the events that shaped America and the world.