Upcoming 145th Anniversary of Forgotten Petersburg Battle Remembered

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For Immediate Release week of March 29, 2010

Contact: Nancy Jones


Email: info@anglevalleypress.com

Upcoming 145th Anniversary of Forgotten Petersburg Battle Remembered

Most Americans have never heard of the Battle of Fort Gregg and yet they should because Confederate and Union soldiers exhibited abundant heroism there. By April 2, 1865, General Ulysses S. Grant’s men had tightened their noose around the vital town of Petersburg, Virginia. On that day 145 years ago, Federal soldiers pierced the thin lines of General Robert E. Lee’s beleaguered Army of Northern Virginia. Trapped on three sides with a river at their back, Lee’s men had never faced such dire circumstances. To allow time to craft an escape, Lee called on a small motley group of Southerners to make a suicidal last stand at Fort Gregg.

 Historian John Fox became fascinated by this obscure battle where barely 300 Confederates fought off some 4,400 determined Union soldiers for more than two hours. When he discovered that nobody had ever written a book about the lopsided fight, Fox wanted to learn more. His five-year quest took him to archives all over the country where he uncovered numerous unpublished accounts of bravery on that day. These letters, diaries and newspaper articles showed that many of the veterans who fought at Fort Gregg considered it the nastiest fight of their war experience. Some of these soldiers could not shake the ugly memories of that day, yet when they passed away, this battle mysteriously faded with them.
The result of Fox’s research is his newest book, The Confederate Alamo: Bloodbath at Petersburg’s Fort Gregg on April 2, 1865. This narrative history takes the reader from the Union battle lines all the way into the fort’s smoking cauldron of hell. Courage and steadfastness stood in abundance as the handful of Confederates fired over Fort Gregg’s muddy parapet into the tidal wave of Union troops. Short on ammunition, these Southerners wondered if their effort would make a difference. Fourteen Union soldiers would later receive the Medal of Honor for their bravery but the few bloody Confederate survivors would spend several unpleasant months in prison.
The Fort Gregg garrison’s final stand did make a difference. Their effort gave General Lee the time he needed to withdraw his army from Petersburg and head west until the end came at Appomattox Court House one week later.
John J. Fox was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia and he later received a U. S. History degree from Washington & Lee University. He is the author or editor of several books and articles about the Civil War. His first book, Red Clay to Richmond, won two book awards. He now lives in Winchester, Virginia.

The Confederate Alamo is available for $34.95 at fine bookstores or by ordering at www.AngleValleyPress.com  or  toll-free 1+ 800-247-6553.


The Confederate Alamo: Bloodbath at Petersburg’s Fort Gregg on April 2, 1865 by John J. Fox, III. First Edition. 6 x 9 cloth, 352 pages, 7 maps, 74 photos, notes, biblio/index. ISBN 978-0-9711950-0-4.

$34.95. Publication Spring 2010 by Angle Valley Press.


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