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Roundtable: Explosion at City Point

February 2, 2023 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Join speaker Kenny Bage as he shares the “The Explosion at City Point.”

City Point was founded as a town in 1613 and incorporated as a town in 1826 and is located in the modern day City of Hopewell at the confluence of the James and Appomattox Rivers. The site served as the location of Union general-in-chief Ulysses S. Grant’s headquarters during the Petersburg Campaign of the American Civil War. It also served as a critical Union port and supply hub for the Army of the Potomac by late 1864. City Point became one of the largest ports in the world at this time.

On August 9, 1864, Confederate agent John Maxwell smuggled an explosive device aboard an ammunition barge at City Point. Maxwell referred to the device as a “horological torpedo” which had a timer to detonate the bomb. An hour later, the bomb exploded, which spread to other barges and buildings around the wharf. The tremendous explosion resulted in 58 killed, 126 wounded and about $4,000,000 in damage. The damage was such that Grant remarked, “every part of the yard used as my headquarters is filled with splinters and shells.”

Mr. Kenny Bage is a local business owner, retired police officer, and a graduate of Saint Leo University. He is a member and leader in almost twenty historical, hereditary, and civic organizations to include: Sons of the American Revolution, Colonial Heights Historical Society, Sons of Confederate Veterans, and the current president of the Petersburg Civil War Roundtable.

The Petersburg Civil War Roundtable (PCWRT) will meet the first Thursday of each month at Pamplin Historical Park and the National Museum of the Civil War Soldier from 7:00 pm-8:00 pm. Annual membership is $40.00. Individuals who are already members of Pamplin Historical Park can become members of PCWRT for $20.00. Non-members can attend for $5.00 each meeting. Call (804) 861-2408 for more information.

This is an in-person event.


February 2, 2023
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
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Pamplin Historical Park
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