Colonel Spotsgnome’s Field Journal:
This entry will cover the vast walking area of stop three in the Battlefield of Spotsylvania Court House tour: Bloody Angle. Here you and the family will really want to take your time and walk every inch of this area, and there is a lot of it!
If you are lucky (and I was!), you may see one of our fine Park Rangers pass through here. Ranger Castellino was finishing a tour for another group. He was kind enough to stop and give us a great history lesson on the importance of Spotsylvania as a crossroads to Richmond and turning the tide in the Civil War.
You’ll need to leave your car at the parking area and take the walking path through bloody angle. If you are looking for a somewhat handicap accessible area of battlefield, this is definitely an option. The path is compact rubber mulch that is easy on the feet and blends well into the natural environment.
Once inside the fence, you’ll see plaques and monuments throughout. Take your time and stop at each. These tell of the Mule Shoe Salient, the Bloody Angle, the men who fought here in some of the fiercest hours of hand-to-hand combat of the Civil War, and of the earthworks that still exist to this day. You can also hike paths off the “rubber trail.” However, please be careful of the earthworks.
As you leave the Mule Shoe, look across the street to the other field. Here you will see where Upton attacked. He formed his 5,000 men into a tight, powerful formation to punch through the Confederate line. From the road you can make your way to the tree line to see the monument that depicts the Confederate alignment on one side, and the Union alignment on the other.
There is still more! Keep tuning in for more on this battlefield!