Seeking a place to site a 1st Maine Cavalry Regiment monument in northern Virginia, Steve Bunker of Gray “wanted to do something at Aldie,”where the regiment charged Confederate troopers defending a stone wall on June 17, 1863.
He envisioned “at the very least a small stone at the stone wall … but the property owner wasn’t interested.”
Another 1st Maine Cavalry re-enactor suggested looking at Middleburg, the next town west on Route 50 where Maine troopers fought on June 19, 1863. “Middleburg was probably a bigger fight for the 1st Maine,” Bunker said.
Assisted by the American Battlefield Trust and other preservation organizations, local residents “managed to save the site” in Middleburg, he noted. Chris Wilson, a 1st Maine Cavalry re-enactor “who lives down there,” contacted Tracey Gillespie, a leading Middleburg battlefield proponent.
“They were looking to take over the battlefield from the American Battlefield Trust,” and Gillespie “was very open to us doing something there,” Bunker said. “We suggested, ‘Why don’t we put a marker there?’
“It turned out Tracey had lived in Lexington, Mass. for some time,” and her husband was involved in history, Bunker noted. “It was obvious we were all on the same page.”