The Battle of Dinwiddie Court House: March 31, 1865


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in Ninth Offensive

Name: The Battle of Dinwiddie Court House

Other Names: None

Location: Dinwiddie County

Campaign: Appomattox Campaign (March-April 1865)1

Date: March 31, 1865

Principal Commanders: Maj. Gen. Philip Sheridan [US]; Maj. Gen. George Pickett and Maj. Gen. Fitzhugh Lee [CS]

Forces Engaged: 65,277 total (US 45,247; CS 20,030)

Estimated Casualties: 821 total

Description: On March 29, with the Cavalry Corps and the II and V Corps, Sheridan undertook a flank march to turn Gen. Robert E. Lee’s Petersburg defenses. A steady downpour turned the roads to mud, slowing the advance. On March 31, Maj. Gen. W.H. Fitzhugh Lee’s cavalry and Pickett’s infantry division met the Union vanguard north and northwest of Dinwiddie Court House and drove it back, temporarily stalling Sheridan’s movement. With Union infantry approaching from the east, Pickett withdrew before daybreak to entrench at the vital road junction at Five Forks. Lee ordered Pickett to hold this intersection at all hazard.

Result: Confederate victory2

Full Summary: Coming soon


First Person Accounts:

    Siege of Petersburg Documents Which Mention This Battle:


    1. The CWSAC site classifies the final battles around Petersburg after Fort Stedman as belonging to the Appomattox Campaign.  The Siege of Petersburg Online: Beyond the Crater classifies the six battles around Petersburg from March 29-April 2, 1865 as belonging to Grant’s Ninth Offensive against Petersburg, a part of the Petersburg Campaign.
    2. CWSAC Battle Summary


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