Mosby's Men - Front Royal VA
N 38° 54.863 W 078° 11.785
17S E 743080 N 4311013
Quick Description: A monument in the Prospect Hill Cemetery is dedicated to seven men of Mosby's Rangers who were executed by the Union during the Civil War in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley.
Location: Virginia, United States
Date Posted: 5/10/2012 4:49:09 PM
Waymark Code: WMED9Q
In 1889, a tall granite monument dedicated to seven of Mosby's Rangers who were executed by Union soldiers in 1864 during the Civil War, was unveiled at Prospect Hill Cemetery in Front Royal, Virginia. According to a NY Times article
, 5000 people attended the event, 200 of them were survivors of Mosby's Rangers.
Confederate Lt. Col. John S. Mosby was also known as the 'Gray Ghost' because of the way he would appear, wreak havoc, and disappear. He organized the Partisan Rangers in 1863. He and his small band of men became experts in guerilla warfare. They disrupted the Union supply lines, transportation routes, and communications.
Six Rangers were captured in Front Royal in September 1864 after trying to attack a train bearing Union supplies. It was alleged they killed a Union officer trying to escape and they were condemned to die. Four were shot and two were hanged. A month later, another of Mosby's men was hanged in retaliation for an ambush that killed Union Maj. Gen. Philip H. Sheridan's chief quartermaster and medical inspector. Mosby always blamed Brig. Gen. George A. Custer who had advanced into the Shenandoah Valley with Sheridan, directly for the executions, although it was probably not Custer who ordered them. During the dedication ceremony, one of the speakers, A. E. Richards, commented that Custer should not be held directly responsible which enraged Mosby who refused to believe it.
Steps up a hillside from the entrance into Prospect Hill Cemetery lead directly to the granite obelisk flanked by two Parrot guns. MOSBY'S MEN is in relief on the base and a Confederate flag is etched on one side. The inscriptions read:
BY SURVIVORS OF
IN MEMORY OF
WHILE PRISONERS OF WAR
NEAR THIS SPOT,
SEPTEMBER 23RD, 1864.
THOMAS E. ANDERSON
DAVID L. JONES
WILLIAM THOMAS OVERBY
HENRY C. RHODES
ALBERT C. WILLIS
43RD BATTALION VA. CAVALRY
The monument was dedicated on the 25th anniversary of the executions.