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Cannon at Pelham's position with
Evelynton House in the background.

  The end of the Seven Days.

July 2-4, 1862

After Malvern Hill, on July 2, 1862, J.E.B. Stuart, assuming that the Federals were somewhere near the James River, thought that some artillery fire might keep them from moving until Stonewall Jackson's and James Longstreet's forces came up.

That night he sent Captain John Pelham, leader of Stuart's horse artillery, to see if there might be a place from which Pelham could sweep the Union location. Before morning, July 3, 1862, Pelham reported that the enemy was near the Byrd mansion of Westover, on low ground dominated by a long ridge known as Evelington Heights. Captain Pelham suggested planting artillery on those heights.

Early on July 3, 1862 Stuart's force marched to Evelington Heights, easily dispatching the Federal squadron on guard there. From their position, the Confederates could see the enemy's wagon trains and camps below the heights. On Stuart's order, Pelham began firing his small howitzer, his only serviceable gun. The initial shot set the teamsters to running and scared some horses, but did little else.

Pelham kept firing but by two o'clock Stuart knew the game was up. Federal forces were forcing back his men and Pelham was rapidly running out of ammunition.

Stuart then learned that Jackson's and Longstreet's forces were on the Charles City road at least six miles distant. He knew the Heights could not be held long enough for the infantry to arrive. Accordingly, he fell back two miles and went into camp.

The next morning, July 4, 1862, when both Jackson and Longstreet were near enough to strike, the position of the Federals on Evelington Heights was too strong to be challenged.

Stuart's participation in the campaign of the Seven Days had finished.

(Primary Source: "Lee's Lieutenants, A study in command" by Douglas Southall Freeman - One-Volume Abridgment by Stephen W. Sears, Pages 271-272 hardback version)

Cannon at Evelynton View from Evelynton Heights
Confederate Cannon Position
on Evelynton Heights - 2000.
View from Evelynton Heights - 2000.

Sign at Evelynton
Sign at Evelynton - 2002
This sign, at the cannon location, appears to have the date wrong.
Freeman places the battle on July 3, 1862 (See battle description above).

* There is some confusion regarding the spelling of Evelynton. The current owners spell it "Evelynton", but Freeman spells it "Evelington". I have elected to use "Evelynton" on this page, with the exception that I use Freeman's spelling in the battle description. - Ed.
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