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Battle of the Crater

Tom Lovell

In stock

Regular price $225.00
Regular price Sale price $225.00

Artist's Proof

Height28 inxWidth 18.38 in



By mid-1864, the Union's attempt to take Petersburg, Virginia, had been slowed to a halt by trench warfare. A mining engineer with the Union army, Colonel Pleasants persuaded General Ulysses S. Grant that an explosive packed tunnel beneath Confederate lines could break the stalemate.

Under Pleasant's supervision, Union troops excavated a 511-foot tunnel with a cross-shaft packed with dynamite. Early in the morning on July 30, the charge was detonated, exploding Confederate lines and hollowing out a crater 150 feet long, 97 feet wide and 30 feet deep. Falling earth formed a high embankment around the crater and one enormous lump of clay perched on the rim.

The ensuing Union charge took four divisions into the crater. This tactical error allowed the Southern forces to regroup and hold the North, now fighting uphill, at bay. By midafternoon and a final Confederate drive, the North had lost 4,400 men. For the South, the clear victory maintained their hold on Petersburg and provided a morale boost to their beleaguered troops.

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