Warner Hall, Gloucester and the Civil War

With our connection to President George Washington (his great-great grandfather founded Warner Hall), we tend to talk a lot about Revolutionary War history. But here in Gloucester, like much of the Chesapeake Bay area, there is rich Civil War history, too.

Gloucester Courthouse, the historic area in the Main Street district (just a 10 minute drive from the manor house), is a great first stop for learning more about America’s internal battles and how it impacted the county that Warner Hall calls home.

The county museum and Visitor’s Center is located there, where you can learn more about the following Gloucester Civil War history, and more:

The Confederate Monument

Standing tall in the middle of the historic Courthouse Circle is the Confederate Monument, erected in 1889 to commemorate soldiers from Gloucester who had died for the Confederate cause. At the time it was constructed, the monument had 130 names etched into it, however, local historians are led to believe that many more Gloucester soldiers died in the Civil War, or as a result of the war.

Remembering James Daniel Gardner

James Daniel Gardner, a Union Army soldier from Gloucester, was the only solider during the Civil War to be recognized for his actions at the Battle of Chaffin’s Farm with the United States military’s highest decoration, the Medal of Honor.

Before enlisting in the Union Army, Gardner was an oysterman. When he joined, he was a Private with Company I of the 36th Regiment U.S. Colored Troops.

During the Battle of Chaffin’s Farm, Gardner’s regiment was among a division of black troops assigned to attack the Confederate defenses at New Market Heights, near Richmond. More than 50 percent of the troops were either killed, captured or wounded following intense Confederate fire. However, during the battle, Gardner forged ahead of his unit into the Confederate fortifications and “shot a rebel officer who was on the parapet rallying his men and ran him through with his bayonet.”

After the battle, Gardner was promoted to Sergeant and later awarded the Medal of Honor.

Though he never returned to Gloucester, a monument honoring his service was erected in Gloucester Courthouse in 2008.

The Courthouse Ablaze

In 1766, the Gloucester Courthouse, which served as the County Seat, was the target of several Union raids. Furnishings were destroyed and used to set the courthouse on fire, stores along Main Street were looted, and the courthouse was vandalized.

In a letter written in April 1863 by Union soldier, Rod Smith wrote, “three or four busily employed in keeping the fuel up by feeding its flame with whole doors, etc., while a man sat in the front of the fire on a stool with his coat off and shirt sleeves rolled up giving orders, like men at the fire of Rome…When we left the place in the lower end of town all the stores were broken open, and at one time, not less than five were on fire including the Court House but were put out.”

Nearby Civil War Trails

Up for a drive? Leave Gloucester Courthouse and head up U.S. Route 17 for about 10 miles to the Civil War Trails’ “Tyndall’s Point Park.”

Here, the first shot of the Civil War in Virginia was made.

When Virginia left the Union in April 1861, Gloucester Point was immediately recognized as one of the keys to Virginia’s riverine defense—it was a perfect location to defend Richmond and the York River form naval attack.

Along the Civil War Trails lie a series of interpretive panels that guide you through the importance of Gloucester to the war.

Want to stay at Warner Hall and explore more Virginia Civil War History? Visit our ACCOMMODATIONS page and book your room today!

    • Warner Hall Entry Drive

      Great Gloucester! – Now through Dec. 15, 2018

      Spend three nights in splendid Warner Hall style now through Dec. 15, 2018 and we’ll give you a $75 gift certificate to your choice of our favorite participating Gloucester restaurants, markets & shops. To name just a few: Bangkok Noi Thai Cuisine, Brent & Becky’s Bulbs, Goodman’s Antiques,  Juan’s Mexican Café and Cantina, Kelsick Specialty Market, Lulu Birds Kitchen, Nuttall’s Store, Olivia’s on Main, Patriot’s Grill, Scoot’s BBQ, The Silver Box, Smith’s Florist, Sweet Tooth Café and Bakery, Tony & Milena’s, Up South!,  Ware Neck Produce, Yolanda’s, York River Oyster Co.

      You must enter GREAT GLOUCESTER in the guest notes when you make your reservation online!

      Click HERE to select your room and make your reservation now!

    • Dog Days of Summer 2018 Lodging Special

      For each online reservation made between Aug. 17 and Aug. 31, 2018 with a two day stay period through October 31, 2018,  the Inn at Warner Hall will donate 15% of lodging proceeds to the Gloucester-Mathews Humane Society. Additionally, guests that bring a 5lb. bag of pet food to check in / out will be entered in a drawing for a free overnight stay on Valentine’s Day.

      You must enter LOVE THAT TAIL in the guest notes when you make your reservation online!

      Click HERE to select your room and make your reservation now!

    • Gloucester Wine Festival – Sept. 22, 2018

      Great wines are waiting to be discovered at the 9th Annual Gloucester Wine Festival – Sat. Sept. 22, 218.  Reserve your stay at Warner Hall for the weekend and receive two free tickets to the Wine Festival!

      Join fellow wine enthusiasts for a tasting of top Virginia wines & fine foods. Learn more about the art of wine making and tasting. Shop with local artisans and vendors and enjoy exciting live music while strolling the grounds of the internationally acclaimed Brent and Becky’s Bulbs.

      You must enter SEPTEMBER IS FOR WINEing in the guest notes when you make your reservation online!

      Click HERE to select your room and make your reservation now!

    • BrewJam Festival – Oct. 20, 2018

      Brew up some excitement this autumn over the weekend of Oct. 20, 2018. Spend two nights at the Inn at Warner Hall and we’ll give you two free tickets to Gloucester Main Street’s BrewJam. Sip some tasty “Brews” and spread your best dance “Jam” moves with friends who enjoy great music, craft beers and delicious food.

      You must enter BREW IT UP BABY! in the guest notes when you make your reservation online!

      Click HERE to select your room and make your reservation now!

    • OHHHHH For the Love of Oysters – Nov. 3, 2018

      Spend the weekend at Warner Hall and we’ll bring a taste of the Urbanna Oyster Festival to you here at the Inn! Experience the warmth & ambiance of one of our signature Boathouse Bonfires while feasting on tasty hors d’oeuvres, soups, salads and of course, OYSTERS!

      Saturday, Nov. 3, 5 – 8pm.

      $20 pp incudes Wine, Beer and live Bluegrass music!

      You must enter LOVE OYSTERS! in the guest notes when you make your reservation online!

      Click HERE to select your room and make your reservation now!

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    • There’s no doubt, it makes our day to know that keeping Warner Hall and its history alive for all to enjoy is so meaningful to all, from the descendants of the great men and women who lived here to the guests who lodge here. We recently received this lovely note of thanks and had to […]

    • We are certainly sad to see this vacation of ours come to an end. How lucky we were to have found this place. Warner Hall is exactly what the B&B experience should be. You have combined all of the essential elements of the perfect getaway. We will be back, many times I’m sure! Thank you! […]

    • Warner Hall not only equaled but exceeded our expectations. The warm Southern hospitality, the gracious surroundings, and the incredible cuisine combined to create a memorable birthday for Donna and for our friends. An outstanding evening of fellowship and food! You have paid attention to detail in the restoration, decoration and in the reception, hosting, “ghosting” care […]

    • Summer and Fall 2018 Lodging Specials and Event at the Inn at Warner Hall

      Make your reservations online to qualify for these SUPER SPECIALS and BASK IN THE SUMMER AND FALL BENEFITS of a visit to Warner Hall! Please note that all applicable price adjustments will be made by the Innkeepers as reservations requests are made and accepted. Great Gloucester! – Now through Dec. 15, 2018 Spend three nights […]

    • A Night of Romance at Warner Hall Starring Elijah Rock & The Virginia Symphony Jazz

      A concert like no other that has come to Gloucester will close out this year’s Gloucester Arts Festival later this month, right here at Warner Hall! On Saturday, June 30, starting at 6:30 p.m., Elijah Rock, a triple threat entertainer breathing new life into the Great American Songbook from coast to coast, will join the […]

    • Keeping History Alive – A Note of Thanks

      There’s no doubt, it makes our day to know that keeping Warner Hall and its history alive for all to enjoy is so meaningful to all, from the descendants of the great men and women who lived here to the guests who lodge here. We recently received this lovely note of thanks and had to […]

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