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This is the Graffiti House in 2009. The next set of pictures are all from 2013.
Brandy Station Battlefield
Closest available address
19484 Brandy Road, Brandy Station, Virginia 22714
Graffiti House is open 11-4 Fri.-Sun. Daylight hours are best for park.
Best time to visit
Summer, Fall, Spring
Fought in June 1863, the Battle of Brandy Station was the largest Cavalry battle of the US Civil War and involved over 20,000 men. While Confederate forces were victorious in the one day battle, their prior supremacy over Union cavalry was ended. The battlefield today is owned by a foundation and is located in several distinct areas.
Brandy Station was the opening engagement of the second Confederate invasion of the North, which culminated in the Battle of Gettysburg. Union cavalry detected a Confederate cavalry buildup around Brandy Station and attacked to forestall an anticipated raid. The Confederate forces were surprised at first and fell back before stabilizing. Another Union force separately attacked from the south. After charge, counter-charge and heavy fighting, Confederate forces gained control and Union troops retreated.
Against great odds, Brandy Station Battlefield has been preserved from development by concerned local citizens who formed a trust to acquire key parcels. The visitor center and a small museum are located at the historic Graffiti house, which still has original drawings from Civil War soldiers. The Graffiti House is worth checking out, but it has very limited hours. A battlefield guide is available at the visitor center for $10 and it thankfully included good directions. Without the guide, following the signs would have been challenging. Parts of the battlefield are privately owned, so access is often limited. While Fleetwood Hill was the most important part of the battle, visiting there provided little understanding of the engagement. The first several tour stops had more extensive walking trails and more signage and were more interesting tour options than later stops. Brandy Station is unusual in that it took place over a sizable area and involved mostly cavalry. As such, it’s hard to visualize the opposing lines, formations or maneuvers. Overall, only those who are very interested in the Civil War will appreciate a visit here.
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