Edwards Ferry

This page lists the various blog entries I’ve made regarding the Edwards Ferry crossing by the Army of the Potomac in June 1863.

Orientation to the Site

Crossing Timeline

Part 1 – June 16-22, 1863

Part 2 – June 23-24, 1863

Part 3 – June 25, 1863

Part 4 – June 26-28, 1863

Maps of the Crossing based on the time line:

June 25

June 26

June 27

Background of the Bridging Operations:

Physics of the Bridging

Other Planning Factors

More Notes on the Numbers

Weather Factors

Daylight hours and Illumination Factors

Unit Movements:

First  Corps Crossing

Second Corps Crossing

Third Corps Crossing

Fifth Corps Crossing

Sixth Corps Crossing

Eleventh Corps Crossing

Twelfth Corps Crossing

Cavalry Corps Crossings (Part 1: Stahel’s Division) (Part 2: Buford’s and Gregg’s Divisions)

Headquarters and Artillery Reserve Crossings

Crawford’s Pennsylvania Reserves

Stannard’s Second Vermont Brigade


Photos of Pontoon Bridges over the Potomac

Communications Infrastructure


Bridge Placement – Maryland and Virginia shores

Some tentative conclusions about the crossing and its importance to the Gettysburg Campaign

Tour of the Site on Gettysburg Daily:  Video clips, maps, and photos of the Edwards Ferry crossing site.

Part 1.

Part 2.

Part 3.

Part 4.

Part 5.

12 thoughts on “Edwards Ferry

  1. My Great Great Grandfather, Benj. R. Poole was running the store at Edwards Ferry just before the war but was put out of business by the time of Ball’s Bluff. I have been researching the area and have come across several claims made by Geo. W. Spates who had a farm at the ferry for damages made by the Federal Army. One item of note was the taking of all his lumber he had just received to build a new barn. The army used it to build a road to get up the brume to the tow path. I have an 1861 – 62 photo of the ferry taken from the high hill on Wm. D. Poole’s farm.
    I’m glad to see you put the telegraph office outside of Poolesville at Camp Heinzeltelman. I have a drawing made by the operator Mr. Douglas.

  2. I happened upon your site and was delighted to see “Edward’s Ferry” so prominent. I have a historical fiction, “Billy Boy, The Sunday Soldier of the 17th Maine,” and as part of the true event, Private Billy Laird, who was believed to be mentally challenged, deserts Livingston’s Battery, 17th Maine, at Edward’s Ferry. I went in search of Edward’s Ferry while researching my novel, and was surprised to find it. Standing on the banks of the Potomac where this young man made the decision to return to Maine was very powerful. His journey home is fictionalized, but when he lands in Maine, the rest of the story is a matter of historical record.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: