• Poplar Grove National Cemetery Luminary Event (photo courtesy of Joanne Williams)

    Petersburg

    National Battlefield Virginia

There are park alerts in effect.
show Alerts »
  • Attn. GPS Users - Advice for Seeking Directions to the Park

    If you are using a GPS unit, please click here: More »

  • No Parking Available in the Eastern Front Unit August 2

    Free shuttle service will transport all visitors to and from the Eastern Front Unit on August 2 during 150th Anniv. of the Battle of the Crater events. Shuttles will depart from the Farmer's Market located at 9 Old St. in Old Towne Petersburg.

  • Eastern Front Unit Trails Closed to Horse Traffic on August 2

    Those who would like to ride horses at the park on Aug. 2 are encouraged to use the trails at Five Forks in Dinwiddie County as other trails will be closed to horses that day while the park commemorates the 150th Anniv. of the Battle of the Crater.

John Hartranft


John Hartranft

Born in 1830 in Pennsylvania, John Hartranft attended school in Virginia and received his degree from Union College in New York. Before the war he was a trained civil engineer, a lawyer, and had held political office. The 90-day volunteer unit he belonged to turned its back and went home on the eve of First Manassas. Though their enlistment was up, Hartranft was humiliated by the decision and he stayed to fight with the army. This act earned him the Medal of Honor. He spent time in North Carolina, fought at Antietam, and served in the West, before gaining command of the 3rd Division of the IX Corps towards the end of the war.

Hartranft is credited with the Union success at Fort Stedman and for this was made a brevet major general.

At war's end he was appointed a special provost marshal during the trial of those accused in Lincoln's assassination. Afterwards he became a general auditor, a two-term governor of Pennsylvania, the postmaster of Philadelphia, and collector of the city port. He died in 1889.

Did You Know?

Richard Eppes, 1890s

Richard Eppes, owner of Appomattox Plantation, which is currently part of the Grant's HQ Unit of Petersburg National Battlefield, noted that it took 8,320 pounds of bacon each year to feed his 127 enslaved people in 1860.