“A Former Confederate Hospital”
Ellwood Manor, a circa 1790 home located on the Wilderness Battlefield in the Virginia counties of Spotsylvania and Orange, is significant to the nation because of the role the house and grounds played during the American Civil War. Much of the Battle of the Wilderness was fought on the plantation itself. Within a year’s span two flags flew over the house: the Confederate Hospital flag and the blue swallowtail flag of the U.S. Army of the Potomac’s Fifth Corps. In 1863, it served as a Confederate recovery hospital for six months following the Battle of Chancellorsville. The family cemetery became the burial site for General Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson’s amputated left arm. One year later Union General Gouverneur K. Warren set up his headquarters in the parlor there. Generals Robert E. Lee and Ulysses S. Grant were at the house in 1863 and 1864, respectively. Built by Tidewater Virginia native, William Jones, in the late 18th century, Ellwood Manor was host to his colleagues, family, and friends. These included James Madison, James Monroe, “Lighthorse” Harry Lee, and the Marquis de Lafayette. Jones’s daughter, Betty, inherited the 5,000-acre plantation in 1847. It was his wish that her children would in turn become Ellwood’s owners. Betty married J. Horace Lacy in the house on October 19, 1848. With the exception of the Civil War years, the Lacys resided at Ellwood until 1896, when they retired to a smaller home on Washington Avenue in Fredericksburg. In 1907, at the deaths of their parents, the eight Lacy children decided to sell the remaining 1,530 acres to the Willis-Jones family, who farmed and called it home for seventy years. Ellwood’s second family had roots in Massachusetts, Vermont, and South Dakota. Through purchase and donation, the Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park (FRSP) acquired Ellwood in 1971 from Gordon W. Jones, MD, of Fredericksburg. Previously Dr. Jones had sold all but the most historic portion of the property. FRSP took possession of the house and 183 acres in 1977, at the death of Dr. Jones’s father, the last resident. Upon transfer of the house to the people of the United States, the long and arduous process of restoration commenced.
The article about Ellwood Manor was rich with history. The vivid photo beckons one to learn more. The accounts of the Civil War era were fascinating. Built by William Jones and inherited by his children , it remained in the family until 1977. Many famous people visited, resided or took shelter here. The country of Fredericksburg is a showcase of American History. I'm so glad Ellwood was restored by the people of the US.
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