Cross Keys

October 2010


At Harrisonburg, we saw where Turner Ashby was killed prior to the battle of Cross Keys.  Roughly three acres of the site is preserved, but James Madison Unversity is developing the surrounding land as an athletic facility, drastically altering this formerly pristine site.


Cross Keys - Union Church Cemetery

Confederate skirmishers harrassed the Union advance from this cemetery.  Some of the headstones show damage from the battle, and at least two casualties of the battle are buried there.


Dr. Irvin Hess showed us the Widow Pence Farm, which he owns.  There is an easement on the property.  Relatively late in life, Dr. Hess learned that he had ancestors who lived on the battlefield.

There are a number of interesting items inside the house, including this photo.  Do you recognize these men?

We took a hayride to the site of the ambush of the 8th NY.


The Hess's dog escorted us - to the annoyance of the livestock!

Confederate Gen. Reumble's men were originally defending the wooded ridge on the far left but then moved forward under cover to this fenceline overlooking an open field with the Massanutten in the background.  The 8th NY, advancing alone without skirmishers, was ambushed by Trimble's brigade and took heavy casualties.


At the barn, we were shown a diorama of the battle, then a short video.

After touring Port Republic, Clive presents Dr. Hess with a plaque as a token of our appreciation.

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