In 1867, just two years after the end of the war, local citizens established this Confederate Cemetery at
Groveton in order to properly inter their honored Southern dead. Thirty-seven years later in 1904, the United Daughters of the
Confederacy erected the monument forever keeping watch at center ground. Today, 266 Confederate soldiers lay at rest here,
all having lost their lives on or around the fields of Manassas. Of those, the names of all but two men have been lost to
the indifferent winds of time. The other unmarked graves cradle soldiers who will rest anonymously for all eternity.
Comparatively however, others emerged from the battles less fortunate. A National Park Service sign at the cemetery entrance notes,
"Hundreds of soldiers received no burial at all."
|Warning: Possibly Disturbing Image
As time passed, the curious and reflective came to the Manassas / Bull Run Battlefield to see for themselves where such terrible
carnage had descended upon the people of this divided nation. One year after the battle, a Harpers Weekly correspondent walked these
very fields, taking in the lingering essence of what was only a part of the grander symphony of death. Overwhelmed by the sights
he encountered, he wrote: "In the long, luxuriant grass, one strikes his foot against skulls and bones, mingled with the
deadly missiles that brought them to earth. Hollow skulls lie contiguous to the hemispheres of exploded shells."
Edwin Forbes also relayed the grim horror of war to the people of the North. Below he depicts Union soldiers on the Battlefield of
2nd Manassas recognizing the remains of comrades killed during the 1st Battle of Manassas. Such is the tragedy of war.