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Sailor's Creek Battlefield State Park

6541 Saylers Creek Rd., Rice, VA 23966; Phone: 804-561-7510; Email:

Latitude, 37.17881. Longitude, -78.137372.
Location of Sailor's Creek Battlefield State Park in Virginia

About this park ...

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Latitude, 37.17881. Longitude, -78.137372.

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General Information

On April 6, 1865, nearly a quarter of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee's army, more than 7,700 men, were killed, wounded or captured here. Lee surrendered 72 hours later at Appomattox Court House. Historical interpreters present various programs and living history events take place at various times throughout the year. Motorists traveling along Lee's Retreat may learn more about the battle through signs at each stop. Also, a free tour of the Overton-Hillsman House, which served as a hospital during and after the battle, may be arranged.

Visit the Virginia's Civil War Trails website or call 888-CIVIL-WAR to learn more about this site. Trail travel packages are available as well; call 1-800-769-5912 for details.


Dawn - dusk. Visitor center, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 12 - 5 p.m. on Sunday.


The park is at 6541 Saylers Creek Road, Rice, Va. From U.S. 460, take Route 617 (Saylers Creek Rd.) to the park. From U.S. 360, take State Route 307 (connecting highway between U.S. 360 and U.S. 460) to Route 617 North (Saylers Creek Rd.).

Its address is 6541 Saylers Creek Road, Rice, VA 23966; Latitude, 37.178810. Longitude, -78.137372.

Drive Time: Northern Virginia, three to three and a half hours; Richmond, one to one and a half hours; Tidewater/Norfolk/Virginia Beach, two and a half to three hours; Roanoke, two hours

Park Size

341 acres.

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Cabins, camping


None. For information on availability of other parks' overnight accommodations, particular park amenities or to make a reservation, you can reserve online or call 1-800-933-PARK. Click here for park fees.

Cabins None.

Camping None.



There are three hiking trails with interpretive signs. Visitors may take the Kershaw Trail (.8 miles), which leads to Sailor's Creek where the Union army traversed the battlefield to assault the Confederate position. The .8-mile Custis Lee Trail allows hikers to see where Gen. Custis Lee counter-attacked Union forces. At Marshall's Crossroads, signs on the .2-mile Pickett Trail describe the final fighting at Sailor's Creek.


None at this park.


Several good fishing opportunities are a short drive from this park. The Appomattox River is a few miles to the northeast. Besides largemouth and smallmouth bass, the Appomattox is home to the Kentucky spotted bass and numerous other freshwater species. Access to the river is limited. Nearby Bear Creek Lake, Twin Lakes and Holliday Lake state parks offer fishing and overnight accommodations.


None at this park.

Park Trail Guide

Click here for the park's trail guide.

Picnic Shelters

Picnic tables and grills are available near the Overton-Hillsman House and the visitor center. The park has no picnic shelters.

Meeting Space and Facilities


None at this park.


The exhibit's timeline begins April 2, 1865, when Confederate forces leave Richmond and Petersburg, and ends on April 8, 1865, the day before the surrender at Appomattox Court House. Displays also features state-of-the-art holographic storytellers and artifacts native to the battles of Sailor’s Creek.

Open year-round, except on Thanksgiving, Christmas and state-designated holidays, the center is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sunday from noon until 5 p.m. A gift shop and the park office also are in the building. Call the park for additional information.

There's no entrance fee for this park.


None at this park.


None at this park.


None at this park.


None at this park.

Other Info


  • ADA-compliant picnic tables
  • Although motorized vehicles are not permitted on park trails, electric wheelchairs and electric scooters that meet the federal definition for wheelchairs are allowed to enable people with disabilities to use the trails.


Click here to view all parks' events, festivals, workshops and interpretive programs.

  • Commemoration of the battle - April
  • Star-gazing - Spring, summer, fall (may be cancelled because of bad weather)
  • Overton-Hillsman House tours - Open for on-demand tours. Call or stop by the visitor center, and an interpreter will guide you through the house.
  • Veteran's Day Luminaria Commemoration
  • Antebellum Saint Nicholas - December


None at this park.


The site is historical because on April 6, 1865, the Black Thursday of the Confederacy, Gen. Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia lost 7,700 men, including eight generals, in the battles of Sailor's Creek. This defeat was key to Lee's decision to surrender at Appomattox Court House 72 hours later, thus ending the war in Virginia. Click here to download a brochure that details the battle.

The Overton-Hillsman House, used as a field hospital during and after the battle, may be toured for free on request during normal park hours. Contact the park at 804-561-7510,, to arrange a tour for large groups.

The small Southside Virginia farmhouse was built circa 1780-1810 by Moses Overton. It served as a field hospital for the Union’s 6th Army Corps. About 358 Union and 161 Confederate soldiers were treated here, on its lawn and in the house. A few days later, the wounded were moved by wagon to a larger hospital at Burkeville Junction 6 miles away. The house has been restored and furnished as a field hospital and home to the Hillsman family. On the floor remain blood stains, permanent and silent reminders of the 72 hours before the end.

The U.S. Department of Interior in 1985 designated Sailor’s Creek Battlefield a National Historic Landmark. The site is of national significance because the battle here ultimately led to the surrender of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee’s army.


Feel like lending a hand? The Friends of Sailor’s Creek Battlefield Historical State Park is a hands-on volunteer 501c3 organization dedicated to preserving and supporting the park. Visit this website or email for more information.


Master plans must be written for parks before they're built. The plans are updated at least once every 10 years thereafter. The plans cover the size, types, infrastructure and locations of facilities as well as the site's special features and resources. Three public meetings are held during the initial development of each plan. Click here for this park's master plan.


Virginia State Parks are great places to discover and reconnect with the wild world. Bring a camera and share your captures with the world. But please don't disturb or get too close to the animals. The park is, after all, their home. Here are a few recent natural encounters others have had at Sailor's Creek Battlefield State Park.

View all wildlife encounter photos from Sailor's Creek Battlefield State Park.