The following map shows Gen. McClellan’s Army of the Potomac (blue) ready to advance into D.R. Miller’s cornfield — now known as “The Cornfield” — on September 17, 1862. Under the command of Gen. Robert E. Lee (red), the Army of Northern Virginia fired north into Miller’s field of ripe corn.
The Cornfield – Confederate View
Confederate Maj. Gen. Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson’s division posted artillery on a modest ridge east of Dunker Church (and near the modern-day Visitor Center). After the Battle of Antietam, Union Gen. Joseph Hooker commented that the corn was cut to the ground “as closely as could have been done with a knife.”
The Cornfield – Union View
The following photo was taken after the Fall harvest. You see three monuments along Cornfield Avenue, from left to right: 104th New York, 11th Mississippi, and Georgia State. Union monuments are on the north side of the road (closest to the camera), and Confederate monuments on the south side. South Mountain is in the distance.
Cornfield Avenue, Looking West
The next photo shows Cornfield Avenue on the left and The Cornfield on the right. From front to back, you see the 27th Indiana monument block, and then the 137th and then the 128th Pennsylvania monuments. Farther in the distance is a monument with a rounded cap; that is the 104th New York monument.
Distant View of Dunker Church, Looking South
Gen. Jackson’s division held the Dunker Church on the morning of September 17, 1862, and the building was a Union target for its visibility from farm fields to the east and northeast. Today, a reconstructed version of the Dunker Church stands across the road from the Visitor Center.
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