Confederate Defense at Bloody Lane Tour/Hike


Gen. John Brown Gordon – CSA

Two brigades of Confederate infantry filed into a partially sunken farm road less than a mile north of Sharpsburg. It was shortly before 9 AM and a potential threat loomed for these soldiers. A large contingent of Union troops had crossed Antietam Creek and approached the field of battle. Using the depressions in the road as rifle pits and fence rails which lined it for protection, Confederate troops fought their determined foe at this “bloody lane” for three hours.

During this 1.4 mile tour/hike of two hours, we will examine, at a comfortable pace, the Confederate defense at the Bloody Lane portion of Antietam Battlefield. Maps and images will be utilized to aid in understanding the troop deployment and to identify commanders.

Highlights of this tour include:

–        beginning at the Visitor Center a concise summation of the battle prior to the fighting at the “bloody lane” is given to provide context and significance

–        Confederate deployment, tactics and leadership are covered at each section of the lane

–        the contour of the ground within the lane and surrounding area and its effect upon the fighting is detailed from the visual perspective of the soldiers who fought there

–        the Union break-through and its containment by the swift and deft Confederate response is explained on the ground where it occurred

–        returning to the Visitor Center area, we discuss a much debated Confederate order during the fighting; a desperate Union attack across the lane late in the day and a final analysis of the fighting and casualties

If you would like more information regarding this tour, please contact me, William Sagle, at

To book this tour, contact the Antietam Battlefield Visitor Center bookstore at 301-432-4329.

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