Known as "The Breadbasket of the Confederacy," the Harrisonburg-Rockingham area played an integral role during the Civil War. Explore iconic Civil War sites including key battlefields, cemeteries where soldiers were buried, and sites involved in The Burning with the Battles on the Home Front driving tour.
Stop at the Hardesty-Higgins House Visitor Center in downtown Harrisonburg to pick up your Battles on the Home Front map and brochure; these documents will help guide you through your Civil War Trails and sites tour.
Begin the tour by exploring the first key area: off Rte 42 S and 33 W from downtown Harrisonburg. Within this district you will stop through The Valley Brethren-Mennonite Heritage Center to learn about The Burning of the Valley, as well as sites relevant to Sheridan's 1864 Shenandoah Campaign including the site of the death of Lt. John Meigs.
Next, head to each of the three remaining key areas: off Rte 253 and 256, Elkton, or off Rte 42 and Rte 11 (Valley Turnpike). Off Rte 253 and 256, you'll find your map will point you to the Turner Ashby Monument, Artillery Ridge, Port Republic Museum, and The Coaling, among other sites. In Elkton, you can stop through three historic sites: Elk Run Cemetery, the Millker-Kite House, and the Jennings House, an 1840 home used as a hospital after the battles of Cross Keys and Port Republic. Finally, off Rte 42 and the Valley Turnpike, you can drive to stops including Long's Chapel at Zenda, the Breneman-Turner Mill that survived The Burning, and signage at Lacey Spring that interprets cavalry actions during one of the last actions of war in the Valley.
Civil War sites located in walking distance of downtown Harrisonburg are separately noted and marked on the map, making a shorter walking tour option available to visitors. Sites on this walking tour include the Virginia Quilt Museum, interpretive signage for courthouse grounds used as a prison camp in 1862, and Woodbine Cemetery, where more than 250 Confederate soldiers are buried.
Last Updated: 3/29/2013 12:35 PM