Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley was a key theater in the Civil War. As a natural geographic highway between North and South and as a richly productive agricultural region whose bounty fed the Confederate troops, the Valley was fiercely contested throughout the war, playing an integral role in almost every major campaign fought in Virginia . More than 325 armed conflicts took place here with Stonewall Jackson’s 1862 campaign perhaps the most famous of these. As the war dragged on, the Valley assumed increasing significance for the southern cause. Union forces responded by laying waste to this region, burning its mills, farms, and towns in a devastating campaign of total warfare.
There is probably no place n the country more suited to Civil War tourism than the Shenandoah Valley. Beginning around Harpers Ferry and
Martinsburg and running southwest, along the Old Valley Pike (modern US
11), to Lexington, the Great Valley of Virginia is filled with historic homes, museums, and some of the most pristine
battlefield land left in the United
Towns such as Winchester, a
transportation center and the scene of five significant battles; to Mount
Jackson, a Civil War hospital center and home to one of the most beautifully preserved Confederate cemeteries in
Virginia, to the Villages of McDowell, Cross Keys and Port Republic around
which the battlefields look much as they did during the War Between the
States, the Valley has it all. This
site is designed to provide a
virtual tour of the area loaded with
historic information and guides to
getting around. This
information is presented by the
Pike Country Store History
Center on the battlefield in
New Market, VA.?>
If this Valley is lost, Virginia is lost,” said General Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson, before leading his Confederate troops through the series of brilliant victories known to history as Jackson's Shenandoah Valley Campaign. But Jackson's incredible marches are only a part of Virginia's Civil War legacy - by far the richest of any state. Today’s visitor, can trace not only the footsteps of "Stonewall", but also those of Phil Sheridan, "Ole Jube" Early, John Mosby, the infamous Custer, and the hundreds of thousands of other soldiers and civilians along many of the same routes they used 140
The battles and maneuvers of the Civil War in the Shenandoah Valley can be traversed today just
as they occurred, in all their chronological complexity. Try the Valley for a chronological overview of the entire war with more than 100 links to particular battles, skirmishes and personalities.
a far simpler, more practical approach is to start at the in northern end of the Shenandoah Valley, and work south along "the Valley Pike" (U.S. 11), taking each site as it comes and making key detours to follow the armies through the wonderful country-side. Take the Civil War Tours section as a guide for your travels.
Check out Soldiers
for stories of the people who lived here and those who came her
e to fight.
Historic Places is a good place to find homes, towns, and other locations with a
rich historic past. Several interesting military subjects from the Civil War period may be found by clicking here.
Today the Shenandoah Valley remains a vital yet vulnerable national historical resource, a place where the meaning of the Civil War comes to life through productive farms, historic roadways, and communities. Development threatens the survival and integrity of these resources. The northern Valley lies within an hour of the Washington, DC suburbs and much of the region is seeing unprecedented growth. In 1996, Congress created the Shenandoah Valley Battlefields National Historic District to protect and interpret the following Civil War battlefields and related historic resources:
The Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation—authorized by the Secretary of the Interior as the non-profit manager of the District—partners with organizations and government agencies at all levels to preserve Valley battlefields and interpret and promote the Shenandoah Valley’s Civil War story for the region and the nation.
The Northern end of the Valley
Jefferson Country Civil War Driving Tour