Bermuda Hundred Campaign in Chesterfield County, VA
Port Walthall Junction
Port Walthall Battle Continued
Bermuda Hundred Campaign
Near 4 p.m., on May 6, Heckman’s 2,700 soldiers encountered a force of roughly 600 Confederates defending a short section of track connecting the Petersburg & Richmond Railroad to the Appomattox River. Under the direct command of Colonel Robert Graham, the Rebels were members of Brigadier General Johnson Hagood’s South Carolina brigade, assigned to Major General Bushrod Johnson’s Division. Not knowing the small size of the Confederate force in front of him, and under orders not to start a general engagement, Heckman ordered a single regiment to probe the Confederate defense. As the Yankees advanced, Graham’s men initially gave ground before entrenching themselves along a sunken road. As the Rebels mounted a stout defense from their new position, Heckman withdrew as darkness approached.General Charles Heckman’s Federal forces of Benjamin Butlers Army of the James was initially stopped by General Hagood’s CSA forces at Port Walthall Junction in Chesterfield County, VA. Heckman left the field and retreated back to Point of Rocks leaving eight dead and sixty soldiers wounded. Confederate reinforcements continued to arrive at Port Walthall Junction. Heckman's attack was deemed a failure. Two days later, General Butler was allowed to push the Confederates back to Swift Creek fortifications effectively cutting the railroad. The 2nd Confrontation began the next day.
The Union won round one of the Bermuda Hundred Campaign. The Federals suffered about 300 casualties (killed, wounded, missing/captured), compared with 200 losses for the Confederacy. Despite the victory, Butler’s army was no closer to Richmond.
Military History Committee
Military History Committee Chair:
About Us : We meet at the Historic Trinity Church in Chesterfield, VA. We research military history and historical sites within Chesterfield County and develop educational and tourist information on military history pertaining to Chesterfield County. We also help to preserve and maintain the military integrity of the Civil War sites in the county and sponsor the annual Veterans Day programs at the historic 1917 Courthouse. Our History Committee consists of two sub-committees. If you are an avid military enthusiast, we encourage you to join the CHSV and the Military History Committee.