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Appendix 4, Chronology of Federal Fortifications:

Assessment of the Principal Earthworks:

The Federal "Fish Hook" Line, Petersburg, VA

 

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From narrative collated from reports of
Col. N. Michler, Official Records Serial 126:173-182

Jul 30, 1864
Battle of the Crater
Jul 31
Sites selected for forts Rice, Meikel, Morton, Haskell, Stedman, McGilvery
Decision to enlarge "lunette" on site occupied by Fort Sedgwick
Aug 18-26
Offensive against the Weldon Railroad Sites selected on Weldon railroad for works at Burnt Chimney and the Strong house (Fort Dushane), Forts Wadsworth, Howard, and Alexander Hays, line selected for military railroad to join Weldon near Globe Tavern. Confederates improve Squirrel Level Road line, extending from near Battery 40 to Fort MacRae
Sep 7
Corduroy roads, entanglements, slashings, under construction. Line raced from Fort Dushane to the rear of the camps, left resting near Fort Bross—Forts Davison McMahon, Stevenson, Blaisdell, and Kelly
Sep 17
Length of main line over 16 miles, consisting of 19 forts and redoubts, 41batteries, old Confederate entrenchments leveled. Line of works traced from Blackwater Swamp north toward Old Court House on Bailey's Creek to James River, to complete circuit of 25 miles, "entirely encircling the Army of the Potomac." Three works on rear line under construction.
Sep 26
Military railroad completed to Globe Tavern, approved for service
Sep 29-Oct 3
Poplar Springs Church Offensive (Peebles and Pegram farms) Line selected from near Pegram house to connect with Fort Wadsworth
Oct 4
Line selected to connect from near Pegram house in rear of Fort Dushane
Oct 8
Forts Keene, Urmston, Conahey, Fisher, Welch, Gregg, Cummings, Sampson, Emery, Siebert, Clarke, and several batteries nearly completed. Three-mile line at City Point under construction. Earthworks now extend 23 miles in a continuous stretch from the Appomattox to Blackwater Swamp. Line to James River would add about 9 miles—36 forts and fifty batteries.
Oct 24
Two new redoubts thrown up near Avery and Friend houses
Oct 26-28
First Hatcher's Run Offensive (Boydton Plank Road)
Nov 12
Rear line from Blackwater Swamp to Bailey's Creek completed
Dec 6-7
Aborted Federal movement on Weldon Railroad
Feb 5-7, 1865
Second Hatcher's Run Offensive
Line selected to connect Fort Sampson and Vaughan Road crossing of Hatcher's Run. Front line from Appomattox River to Hatcher's Run now about 15 miles in length.
Jan-Mar
Earthworks enclosed and strengthened all along the lines to free as
many troops as possible to participate in spring operations. Fort Fisher redesigned and rebuilt, beginning in January

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