During the Battle of Fredericksburg, Confederate Brigadier General Cobb was mortally wounded on December 13, 1862 on Sunken Road. He suffered an injury in the thigh severing his femoral artery and bled to death shortly thereafter. It was originally reported that the injury was from a Union artillery shell that burst inside the Stephens house on Sunken Road that runs along the base of Marye’s Heights. However, later accounts by a few Confederate veterans of the battle claim he was shot by one of his own soldiers.
In 1888 Cobb’s family erected the marked depicted in the images below. It is thought that the marker is at or very near the spot where Cobb was mortally wounded.
“The monument across the road marks the spot where General Thomas R. R. Cobb suffered a mortal wound. A brilliant Constitutional lawyer prior to the war, he left his practice to take up arms for the South. At Fredericksburg Cobb fought his first battle as brigadier general in command of a Georgia brigade. He was determined to do well. When told before the battle that he must fall back if the troops on his left gave way, Cobb growled, “Well! If they wait for me to fall back, they will wait a long time.”
Cobb fell when a Union artillery shell crashed through the Stephens house, behind you, and exploded, sending shrapnel into his thigh. He would die a few hours later. Although Cobb was a Georgian, his mother had grown up in Fredericksburg. Her childhood home, “Federal Hill,” stood on the outskirts of town within sight of Cobb’s position (tees and postwar houses obscure the view today). Later accounts claimed that the shot that killed Cobb was fired from the vicinity of his mother’s house.
Cobb served briefly as a delegate to the Provisional Congress of the Confederate States before drawing his sword for the South. This 1862 photograph shows him as the colonel of Cobb’s Legion.
Erected in the 1880s, this stone to General Cobb is one of the earliest monuments in the park. This photograph was taken about 20 years after the monument was erected.”
ON THIS SPOT
GEN. THOMAS R. R. COBB
FELL IN BATTLE
DECEMBER 13, 1862