Friday, August 21, 2015

Charles Harrison Marks & the Battle of New Market

    This battle of the Civil War was fought against the northern troops by a small Confederate unit on 15 May 1864 at New Market, Shenandoah County, VA. Cadets from the Virginia Military Institute in Lexington were recruited to augment the Confederate forces and 257 fought in the battle. The south prevailed and the north’s line retreated. Ten cadets died on the field or of their injuries and forty-five were wounded.   
    Among the New Market cadets was Charles Harrison Marks of Prince George County VA, Class of 1867.  After the evacuation of Richmond in April 1865, he joined the Confederate Army and was shot through the thigh during the last fight at Salisbury, Rowan County, NC. He then continued his education and graduated from VMI.

Aberdeen - early 1920s
    Charles was born on 15 August 1846, son of Edward Archer Marks and Eliza Ann Bryant. He was educated at Prince George Academy, a school co-founded by his father, and at VMI. On 29 April 1870 he married Helen Peebles Harrison, daughter of Richard Marks Harrison and Rebecca Jane Peebles. The couple lived in Prince George County, lastly at Aberdeen, a plantation Charles purchased in 1886. He was a farmer and also engaged in the lumber business. 
   Charles died on 22 June 1895 and was buried in the Marks graveyard at Old Town, the plantation in Prince George County owned by his grandfather, Edward Marks Jr. (1775-1822). The dwelling burned in January 1993 and was razed, but the burial site is still extant.

    For his participation in the Battle of New Market, Charles was awarded a medal for valor by the VMI Alumni Association.

Photos from Buffalogen's collection