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Friday, June 29, 2012


Note: the 18th continues its trip down the Pamunkey River


As a rising sun illuminated the anchored Cornelius Vanderbilt flames and smoke could still be detected from the direction of White House Landing. From the stern of the ship the voices of contrabands, who filled two small boats tied to the rail, could be heard lifting heavenward in "a prayer-meeting."

Underway a short time later the Vanderbilt slowly steamed past West Point and later Yorktown, both of which places were entirely familiar to the Regiment. In late afternoon, in what must have seemed like a full circle homecoming of sorts, the walls of Fortress Monroe, rising out of the placid harbor waters at Hampton, came into view.

Far in the distance the Fifth Corps positioned itself close by the Fourth Corps at the junction of the Long Bridge, Charles City, and the Quaker roads where it waited a possible Confederate approach. That threat never materialized and at night Fitz-John Porter received orders to move toward Malvern Hill. It turned out to be a long night as the Corps, after being led down a wrong road, discovering its error, and countermarching, finally arrived at their destination between 10 and 11 a.m. the following morning.

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