On March 31, 1865 after 10 months of siege at Petersburg, the Battle of White Oak Road set the stage for Union victory at Five Forks the following day. The Union built fortifications close to the Confederate line along White Oak Road. On the morning of the battle, Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee road out to White Oak Road and learned of a gap in the left flank of the Union line. He decided to attack and roll up the exposed left flank and sent the Federals into retreat. Later that afternoon, the Union counter-attacked, drove the Confederates back to their entrenchments, and re-took possession of White Oak Road, thereby dividing the Confederate Army and preventing reinforcements between the White Oak Road division and those positioned at Five Forks.

Visiting the White Oak Road Battlefield

Your best bet to tour White Oak Road is to start at the Civil War Trust trail located at the junction of routes 613 and 631 about 6 miles south of Petersburg Breakthrough and about 5 miles east of Five Forks. Here there is an easy, well-marked trail with interpretive signs and preserved Confederate entrenchments.

Visit Civil War Trust for battle details and information about the preservation of this battlefield.

Pictured at the top: The Civil War Trust trail is easy, scenic, well-marked and features interpretive signs and a nice place to sit and enjoy your lunch.

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(left) The Civil War Trust has preserved nearly 900 acres of battlefield lands at White Oak Road. (right) The Union attacked Confederate entrenchments on White Oak Road with the intention of severing communications between the White Oak Road and Five Forks divisions.