…and for Bull Runnings…

Posted on September 12, 2009 by


I know, Harry… I took these photos three months ago and I’m just now getting around to posting them… but hey… better late than never… 🙂

As some of you know, this past June, I was down in Savannah, recalling, once again, just what it really means to have humidity. People in Virginia say a day is humid, but I have to laugh and remark, “yes, but it’s not Georgia humid.” Living in Georgia and getting the car ready in the morning in the summer time requires one to blast the a/c, give it a few minutes to cool off, and then get in the car… sort of the opposite of Virginia when we have a frost. Anyway…

One of the things that really struck me about Savannah is what amounts to a “mini Savannah at First Bull Run…. orrr Manassas… tour.” Within hours of arriving, I grabbed a copy of a self-guided tour book for Civil War sites in the area. The book worked on the surface, but didn’t go into great detail (go figure… but hey, it was written for the largest possible audience… good going in the usability department there…). Perhaps the thing that disappointed me most was when it directed me to a specific site, but did not clarify if what I was looking at was the exact site that existed in the war, whether it was a rebuilt building, etc. I really like to know if what I’m looking at is the real deal or not.

The first 1stBR site in my personal tour of discovery was the Francis S. Bartow House on West Harris Street. He left this residence when he headed off to war with the Oglethorpe Light Infantry (later Co. B, 8th Georgia Infantry). Note the Realtor sign on the front. Yes… it was for sale as of June, for a cool 1.5 million… or was it 2 mill… I can’t remember. Awesome looking place. 


Of course, Bartow met his end at First Manassas. Upon the return of his remains in late July, he was laid in state at the Cotton Exchange, at the intersection of Bull & Bay streets, for two days. The Exchange is gone now, and the City Hall stands in its place. The bell that was in the Exchange, however, can be seen in a nearby cupola (at ground level.) Regretfully, this is one of two sites that I did not capture in a photo. You can see it here.  The photo below is of City Hall.



Next, his body was moved to The Christ Church, on Bull Street, where funeral services were held…


 … and then his body was moved to Laurel Grove Cemetery (not to be confused with Laurel Grove South Cemetery), on West Anderson.


I had no idea his father was actually a New Yorker by birth… this is a photo of his headstone, just to the left of Francis Bartow’s grave.



 I didn’t have a chance to visit Forsyth Park, but the bust of Bartow is pictured here.

 Then we have the others who were brought here after 1st Manassas. Though Bartow was returned to Savannah within days of his death, nine other Savannahians were not returned home until February 1862. Funeral services were conducted at the Independent Presbyterian Church on Bull Street…



I didn’t have a chance to find all the graves of the 8th Georgia’s 1st Manassas dead, but this is the grave of George M. Butler…  


Closing out my whirlwind tour of 1st Bull Run/Manassas related sites are the homes of two rather well-known Confederate officers.

Gilbert Moxley Sorrel’s boyhood home (the old Sorrel-Weed House) is on West Harris Street.




  … and then there is the postwar home of Edward Porter Alexander on East Harris Street. He lived here during the 1880s and 1890s, while president of the Savannah and Memphis Railroad.