Detailed topographic map showing Appomattox River in the north, Petersburg in the upper right, and Five Forks at the far left center. Confederate works are shown in red and Union fortifications in blue. Houses, names of residents, railroads, roads and the street pattern of Petersburg are among the features shown.
The Battle of Five Forks was fought on April 1, 1865, southwest of Petersburg in Dinwiddie County. The battle, sometimes referred to as the "Waterloo of the Confederacy," pitted Union Major General Philip H. Sheridan against Confederate Major General George E. Pickett. Lee ordered Pickett to hold the crossroads of Five Forks with his infantry division and three cavalry divisions. Pickett's loss at Five Forks triggered Lee's decision to abandon Petersburg and begin the retreat that led to his surrender at Appomattox Court House on April 9th.