The Battle at Chaffin’s Bluff (also known as the Battle of Chaffin’s Farm) took place along Confederate fortifications near Fort Harrison and Fort Johnson in Virginia on 29 September 1864. It was part of the Richmond-Petersburg Campaign, a determined attempt by the Union Potomac Army to wrest Richmond, Virginia, from Confederate control. The obstacle that stood between the Union army and Richmond was the series of timber and earth fortifications stretching from New Market Rd to James River, at the centre of which were the cornfields of Chaffin’s Farm. Chaffin’s Bluff on the James would provide waterway access to Richmond, should the fortifications be destroyed. At dawn Union troops, including 683 African-Americans and artillery under General Edward O.C. Ord, crossed James River and surprised the small army of Confederates. Union soldiers hacked through the timber fence near Fort Harrison and entered the Confederate stronghold, which was under the leadership of Confederate General Richard Stoddert Ewell.
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