Chesterfield Historical Society of Virginia

MIssion:   to collect, preserve, interpret and promote the county’s  past  for the education and enjoyment of present and future generations

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Fort Wead/Sgt Engle Park

The Bermuda Hundred Campaign of 1864       Fort Wead , 1107 Greyledge Blvd, Chester, VA 23836

​Fort Wead was constructed in June of 1864 at the rear of Union Lines and was named after Col. Frederick Wead (pictured) of the 98th New York who was killed in action at Cold Harbor. The fort was built in the rear of the main Union defensive line to prevent Confederate forces from advancing in the event the main lines were captured. Fort Wead was constructed  at the rear of the Union lines. Although it's purpose was to prevent Confederate forces from advancing in the event the Union lines were broken, it was never used.   The fort had emplacements for six 32-pounder cannons within a small earthworks. Inside the earthworks was a bombproof magazine dug into the ground and protected by a log and earth cover. All of the guns faced west, two in the corners and four along the parapet. Access to the fort was from an east side sally port and a draw bridge over the surrounding moat. (Pictured is Colonel Frederick Wead, U.S. A. and Sgt James Engle , U.S.A.)

Fort Wead c. 1865

The Bermuda Hundred Campaign of 1864   Sgt James Engle Park , 13920 Tobacco Bay Place, Chester, VA 23836

​Sgt. Engle Park is named after Sgt. James E. Engle, of Company I, 97th Pennsylvania Volunteers.  During the Battle of Ware Bottom Church on May 18, 1864, members of the 8th Maine Regiment were driven from their lines just in front of these earthworks. The 97th Pennsylvania was ordered to retake the line. During the day the regiment kept up an uninterrupted fire and by that afternoon they were dangerously low on ammunition. A call was put out for volunteers to carry ammunition to the regiment on the pickett line.  James Engle, at that time a Corporal in the Color Guard, and John Parsons, a musician, responded to the call. They succeeded in carrying a box of ammunition to the front under heavy fire. Parsons attempted to return to the rear for more ammunition when he was mortally wounded. Engle remained at the front distributing ammunition under constant fire for the rest of the day. In 1896, Sgt Engle was awarded the Medal of Honor after members of the regiment recommended him for it.  The medal was awarded to him on December 14, 1896.

 Go to:   Dodd Park