Petersburg National Battlefield

Petersburg National Battlefield

Quick Facts

Petersburg National Battlefield

Virginia

(804) 732-3531

Map Directions

Things To Do

Overview

Petersburg, Virginia, became the setting for the longest siege in American history when General Ulysses S. Grant failed to capture Richmond in the spring of 1864. Grant settled in to subdue the Confederacy by surrounding Petersburg and cutting off General Robert E. Lee's supply lines into Petersburg and Richmond. On April 2, 1865, nine-and-one-half months after the siege began, Lee evacuated Petersburg.

Map of Petersburg

Latitude, Longitude: 37.229235, -77.361603

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Activities

  • Bird Watching

    From the majestic Bald Eagle to the Ruby-throated Hummingbird, 129 avian species have been recorded at Petersburg National Battlefield. Many of these species are migratory, stopping at the battlefield during the spring or fall as they travel along their migration routes. Others, like the Pileated Woodpecker, make their homes in the park year-round.

    Osprey, Caspian Terns, Bald Eagles, Merlin, and the state bird of Virginia, the Cardinal, are often seen at the City Point Unit of Petersburg National Battlefield. Located at the confluence of the James and Appomattox Rivers, this area is the perfect natural habitat for these beautiful specimens.

  • Bicycling

    Hiking and bicycle trails can be found at both the Eastern Front (Main) Unit and the Five Forks Battlefield Unit. Outdoor exhibits are located near these trails which will help you understand the historic significance of Petersburg National Battlefield.

  • Auto/Motorcycle

    A driving tour of the battlefields outlined on the park map includes 13 separate sites with three visitor centers along a 33 mile route. A full day is required to experience the entire battlefield park. The park commemorates the nine and one-half month siege of this city from June 1864 - April 1865.

  • Hiking

    Hiking and bicycle trails can be found at both the Eastern Front (Main) Unit and the Five Forks Battlefield Unit. Outdoor exhibits are located near these trails which will help you understand the historic significance of Petersburg National Battlefield.

  • Historic Sites

    The Eastern Front Visitor Center offers exhibits and audio-visual programs that introduce the story of the siege and its place and impact on the course of the Civil War. Park staff will answer questions and provide information to help you make the best use of your time.

    At Grant's Headquarters at City Point you will learn about the Union's massive supply base and large field hospital operation. Also explore the story of the Appomattox plantation, the Eppes family and their slaves who were here before the war's arrival. On the western end of the tour route is Five Forks Battlefield where Gen. Sheridan's victory over Gen. Pickett's forces ensured the collapse of Petersburg and Richmond.

    Throughout the year park staff present a variety of talks, tours, living history demonstrations and special events that commemorate the park's rich heritage. Check the schedule of events for upcoming programs.

  • Horseback Riding

    Horse trails on site.

  • Picnicking

    Picnicking is encouraged, and a picnic area is provided.

  • Wildlife Watching

    Many different species call Petersburg National Battlefield home, although their presence is not always easily observed. In the fields where soldiers once charged forward, trying to avoid enemy fire, the White-footed mouse now searches for its dinner while trying to avoid the Gray fox and the watchful eye of the Red-tailed hawk. This mixture of cultural history and animal life make the battlefield an intriguing place to visit.

    Deer, rabbits, opossums, shrews, foxes, and raccoons are some of the more visible residents of the battlefield. The combination of wooded and open field habitats attracts a variety of avian species such as Cardinals, terns, and hawks. Visitors can also observe Osprey along the Appomattox and James Rivers.

    There are also many different species of amphibians and reptiles in Petersburg National Battlefield. These include large communitys of Five-lined skinks, Eastern fence lizards, and Spade-footed toads. The Eastern box turtle and the Eastern worm snake also have very large populations within the park.

Seasonality/Weather

The best times to visit the Mid-Atlantic Region are fall and spring. Summer days are usually hot and humid.

Directions

Driving

Grant's Headquarter's at City Point

1001 Pecan Avenue, Hopewell, VA. (804) 458-9504

For GPS users enter 37 19' 0.46" N, 77 16' 38.63" W

From I-95 & 295: Take Rt. 10 east towards Hopewell. Cross over the Appomattox River and at the second traffic light past the bridge take a left onto Main Street/Appomattox Street. Follow until it meets Cedar Lane and take a left. As you come up to the plantation house the parking lot is on the left. From Williamsburg: Take Rt. 5 north and turn left to cross the Benjamin Harrison Bridge (Rt. 156). After crossing over the James River turn right onto Rt. 10 and follow into Hopewell. Turn right onto Main Street / Appomattox Street and follow above directions to Cedar Lane.

Eastern Front

5001 Siege Road, Petersburg, VA

(804) 732-3531 ext.200

For GPS users enter 37 14' 37.87" N, 77 21' 24.87" W

If not using these coordinates then do not use GPS and follow directions below.

From I-95 & I-85: Take the Wythe Street (Rt. 36 east) exit. Turn onto this one-way road and follow it 2.5 miles to the park entrance on the right. From 295: Take exit 9B onto Rt. 36 west to park entrance on the right just past Fort Lee. From Norfolk area: Take 460 west to Petersburg and take the Crater Road (Rt. 301) north exit. Follow Crater Road to Wythe Street, turn right and follow it for 2.5 miles to park entrance.

Five Forks Battlefield

9840 Courthouse Road, Dinwiddie, VA

(804) 469-4093

For GPS users enter 37 8' 7.08" N, 77 37' 12.31" W

If not using these coordinates then do not use GPS and follow directions below.

From I-95: Take exit #51 onto I-85 south. Then take exit #61 onto 460 West. Travel seven miles and take left onto Rt. 627 - Courthouse Road. Travel three miles to contact station on right. From I-85 north: Take exit #53 and left onto Rt. 703. Then make a left onto Rt. 1 and then a right onto Rt. 627 - Courthouse Rd. Travel 5 miles to contact station on left.

Poplar Grove National Cemetery

8005 Vaughan Road, Petersburg, VA

For GPS users enter 37 9' 34.95" N, 77 25' 47.33"W

If not using these coordinates then do not use GPS and follow directions below.

From Crater Road (Route 301): Turn onto Flank Road and follow it until it intersects with Halifax Road. Turn right onto Halifax and then take your first left onto Flank Road again. Follow to the next cross street Vaughn Road and turn left. Less than a mile on the left side is the entrance to the cemetery. From I-85: Take the Squirrel Level Road exit and turn onto to it heading south away from Petersburg. After going straight through the first traffic light at Defense Road keep to your left onto Wells Road as Squirrel Level Road turns sharply to the right. Follow Wells to Halifax Road and turn right. Drive down Halifax to Vaughn Road on the right. Follow Vaughn Road through the Flank Road intersection and to the cemetery as mentioned above.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(804) 732-3531

Links