MANASSAS, Va. — I finally got the family to join me as I did today's walk at Manassas National Battlefield Park. Together, we walked the Stone Bridge Loop Trail, a moderate 1.3 mile along Bull Run, past the site of the Van Pelt home, and a wooden boardwalk through a marsh.
The original Stone Bridge, built in 1825, played a key role in the area before and during the U.S. Civil War. The Confederates destroyed the bridge in March 1862 to prevent its use by the Union forces. Union Army engineers constructed a temporary wooden span, but after suffering a defeat at the Second Battle of Bull Run (Second Manassas) the bridge was the primary line of retreat for Union forces who destroyed it after they crossed the river. The current bridge was fully rebuilt by 1884.